Top U.S. Marketing Exec Exiting A-B

Abenante will fill role until brewer finds Levy's replacement

ST. LOUIS -- Anheuser-Busch InBev's top U.S. marketing executive is leaving the company, reported the Associated Press. The company said late last week that Keith Levy, vice president of marketing for Anheuser-Busch, is leaving effective immediately to "pursue other opportunities."

Levy (pictured)joined Anheuser-Busch in 1987 and helped lead the marketing division through the 2008 merger of Anheuser-Busch and InBev, which made the company the world's largest brewer by sales.

Anheuser-Busch InBev NV, like many of its peers, saw beer sales volumes decline in the [image-nocss] United States, Canada and Western Europe during the recession, increasing its reliance on foreign markets.

"The leadership of our marketing is key to our growth and to exceeding our consumers' expectations," Dave Peacock, president of the U.S. division, said in a statement.

Frank Abenante, the company's global vice president of brands and insights, will lead the marketing function in the United States until a permanent replacement is found for Levy, said the report.

Abenante joined Belgium-based Anheuser-Busch InBev in 2007 and has worked in marketing with companies such as Unilever and E. & J. Gallo Winery, added The Wall Street Journal.