UPDATE 5-SABMiller rejects AB InBev's $104 bln takeover approach
* AB InBev proposes cash offer and partial share alternative
* SABMiller says it "very substantially" undervalues it
* African markets seen as key attraction to AB InBev
* Top shareholder Altria supports offer, No. 2 does not (Adds comments by AB InBev CEO)
By Philip Blenkinsop and Martinne Geller
BRUSSELS/LONDON, Oct 7 (Reuters) - SABMiller, the world's second largest brewer, has promptly rejected an improved takeover proposal from Anheuser-Busch InBev, saying its 68 billion-pound ($104 billion) valuation was "very substantially" under par.
Refusal of the offer, made public on Wednesday after earlier proposals were refused privately, opens the door to a week of intense wrangling before an Oct. 14 deadline for a formal bid set by the UK takeover panel.
The deal would be one of the biggest in corporate history, uniting the maker of Budweiser, Corona and Stella Artois beers with that of Peroni, Grolsch and Pilsner Urquell. The combined entity would make nearly a third of the world's beer.
AB InBev realistically needs access to SAB's private financial data if it is to make an informed formal bid, but said that so far the board had not engaged meaningfully. Continuación...