Anheuser-Busch InBev (AB InBev), Leuven, Belgium, has completed its acquisition of Grupo Modelo, Mexico City, in a transaction valued at $20.1 billion. The combined company will benefit from the growth potential that Modelo brands such as Corona have globally outside of the United States, as well as locally in Mexico, where there also will be opportunities to introduce AB InBev brands through Modelo’s distribution network, the companies say.

The combined company will lead the global beer industry with roughly 400 million hectoliters of beer volume annually, bringing together five of the top six most valuable beer brands in the world, the companies note. The acquisition also is expected to generate approximately $1 billion in cost synergies.

“We have tremendous respect for Grupo Modelo and its brands, and we are thrilled to welcome our Grupo Modelo colleagues to the global team,” said Carlos Brito, chief executive officer of Anheuser-Busch InBev, in a statement. “We look forward to realizing our opportunities for growth and bringing our beers to more consumers around the world as we join two world-class brewers.”

As previously announced, Ricardo Tadeu will serve as zone president of Mexico and chief executive officer of Grupo Modelo, effective immediately. Mexico will become AB InBev's seventh zone. Grupo Modelo’s headquarters will remain in Mexico City, and it will continue to have a local board, which will be appointed by AB InBev at its next shareholders meeting.

The related transaction with Victor, N.Y.-based Constellation Brands — including the sale of Grupo Modelo’s Piedras Negras brewery, Grupo Modelo’s 50 percent stake in Crown Imports, and perpetual rights to Grupo Modelo’s brands in the United States — is expected to close June 7.