The Competition Commission of India, or CCI, conducted dawn raids at the offices of United Breweries Ltd., Carlsberg A/S and Anheuser-Busch Inbev SA/NV in at least two cities as part of its investigation into alleged price fixing, Reuters reported Oct. 11, citing sources familiar with the matter.
The CCI has been conducting an antitrust investigation of the three companies for the past year. The regulator received a tip from one of the three brewers after it filed a leniency application with the regulator, revealing details of the alleged price fixing, the report said, citing a source with direct knowledge of the inquiries. The CCI's leniency program is a type of whistleblower protection offered to cartel members, the report said.
The raids unearthed emails showing that the companies were fixing prices, the report said, citing a government source.
None of the three beer makers immediately responded to requests for comment from S&P Global Market Intelligence.
Denmark-based Carlsberg, local giant United Breweries, and Belgium-based Anheuser-Busch Inbev are among the top players in India's beer market.
Anheuser-Busch Inbev-owned brewer SABMiller has also been accused by Indian authorities of avoiding paying taxes in the country.
Anheuser-Busch Inbev is the world's largest brewer.