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Budweiser brewing giant AB InBev cancels Hong Kong IPO

Belgian-Brazilian group Anheuser-Busch InBev is the world's largest brewer, producing Stella Artois and Budweiser among other major brands (AFP Photo/JUSTIN TALLIS)

The company that makes Stella Artois and Budweiser has scrapped its planned listing in Hong Kong, cancelling what would have been the world's largest initial public offering this year.

Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world's biggest brewer, had hoped to raise almost $10 billion from listing its Asia Pacific subsidiary Budweiser Brewing Company APAC Ltd.

"The company is not proceeding with this transaction due to several factors, including the prevailing market conditions," Belgium-based AB InBev said in a statement Friday.

"The company will closely monitor market conditions, as it continuously evaluates its options to enhance shareholder value, optimize the business and drive long-term growth, subject to strict financial discipline."

The move is a blow to Hong Kong, which has been battling to win listings by big international firms at a time of trade tensions between China and the United States.

It also comes after a month of mass protests in the city over a controversial extradition bill.

The Belgian-Brazilian group's IPO would have been the biggest in the world since Uber's listing earlier this year raised $8.1 billion.

But that could be easily surpassed as Chinese online retail titan Alibaba considers a Hong Kong listing.

The tech firm is reportedly looking to raise an eye-watering $20 billion, which would be the biggest in Hong Kong since insurance firm AIA raised $20.5 billion.

Alibaba raised $25 billion when it listed in New York five years ago, making it the world's biggest IPO.