AB InBev is in talks to buy Corona brewer Grupo Modelo.

The Stella Artois brewer already holds a 50.4% stake in Modelo but control of the company rests with its Mexican shareholders.

A deal could cost AB InBev $12bn (£7.69bn).

Modelo is the world’s seventh-largest brewer by volume, dominating the Mexican market with a 63% share, while its Corona lager is the most popular imported beer in the US. Corona is distributed in the UK by Molson Coors.

“These talks may or may not result in the consummation of a deal and any speculation on the terms and conditions is premature,” Modelo said in a statement.

AB InBev said “conversations” were underway about the companies “expanding their relationship” but stressed a deal was not certain.