News 4 Investigates: Anheuser-Busch Payout -

News 4 Investigates: Anheuser-Busch Payout

It's not surprising that the richest guys at Anheuser-Busch are also the ones receiving millions of dollars in payouts once the InBev merger is finalized tomorrow. The details in this blog are all available to the public in special shareholders proxy statement filed last month. The "interests of Anheuser-Busch's Directors and Executive Officers" begins on page 44.

Let's start with August Busch IV, who will receive $10.3 million in a lump sum cash payment. Mr. Busch will also get an additional $11.1 million dollar payment for changes in other benefits.

Mr. Busch IV also got a $120,000 a month consulting deal that includes "an appropriate office in St. Louis, Missouri with administrative support." In addition, he'll receive complimentary tickets to Anheuser-Busch sponsored events and personal security services (through December 31, 2011).

What is your severance package at work?

Sixteen A-B executives will receive a total of more than 27 million in "enhanced severance" payments. Most of them will get the benefits for two years.

How about that bonus this year?

Thirteen A-B executives will receive more than $1 million in bonuses. August Busch IV got the biggest bonus; $6 million, which is in addition to his other cash payments.

How much money do you have in company stock?

Eleven A-B executives or directors will have at least $20 million in stock that can sold when the merger is final. A-B Chairman Patrick Stokes has $140 million in stock. August Busch III has $103 million in stock. August Busch IV has $88 million in stock.

So, are they worth it?

I guess that depends on how you value their contributions. Many people would say that no one should be paid that much money. However, the top executives are the ones who were the most involved in the InBev merger. As a result of the merger, A-B stock jumped from $45 to $70 a share, which created nearly $18 billion in shareholder value. The executive compensation packages represent only a small fraction of the $18 billion created by the merger.

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