Constellation sinks as US sues to block beer deal

Associated Press + More

NEW YORK (AP) — Shares of Constellation Brands are sinking after the U.S. Justice Department filed an antitrust lawsuit challenging Anheuser-Busch InBev's proposed $20.1 billion purchase of Mexican brewer Grupo Modelo, which would unite the ownership of popular beers such as Bud Light and Corona.

That harms the chances of Constellation's related $1.85 billion deal that would land it greater U.S. control of Corona and other beers. Constellation was to buy the remaining half of a joint venture with Grupo Modelo, Crown Imports LLC, that imports Modelo beers into the U.S.

The deal with Constellation was intended to alleviate antitrust concerns. But the Justice Department says that it wasn't enough to protect U.S. beer buyers.

Constellation Brands Inc. shares lost 20 percent. U.S.-traded shares o Anheuser-Busch InBev SA fell 8 percent.

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