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Bud is Back !


Anheuser-Busch InBev said that starting yesterday, the "BUD" ticker symbol is trading again on the New York Stock Exchange.

The symbol left the exchange last year after Anheuser-Busch Inc. sold itself to Belgian brewer InBev for $52 billion.

The deal created Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world’s largest brewer, known for brands like Budweiser and Beck’s. The company has a plant and theme park ( Busch Gardens) in the Williamsburg, VA. area.

Its shares will maintain their primary listing in the company’s home country of Belgium. But CEO Carlos Brito said that growing interest from U.S. investors prompted the company to list itself in the U.S. as well.

Anheuser-Busch InBev’s American depositary receipts — shares sold by foreign companies — rose 70 cents to close at $46.95 in trading yesterday.

Brito said ABInBev is now 60 percent done with its efforts to sell $7 billion in noncore assets to help pay for the deal.

The company is in no rush to sell the rest just yet.

"We’re still committed to $7 billion, but the good news is we’re in no hurry to do it," he said, citing the company’s performance so far in 2009.

Last month, the Belgium-based company said its net profit in the first half of the year rose more than 50 percent to $1.92 billion.Global sales fell 1.1 percent.

When InBev bought Anheuser-Busch last year, the brewer said it wanted to make the flagship Budweiser brand into a global icon akin to Coca-Cola.

Since then, the company has been doing consumer research to determine how best to do that. Brito said there is strong brand awareness for Budweiser.

The company will continue to do research to figure out which markets make the most sense to enter. "We’re taking our time, we want to do it right, but we’re committed to do it," he said.

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