The company can trace its origins back to 1366 to a brewery called Den Hoorn, located in Leuven, a city just outside of Brussels. In 1717, Sebastien Artois, the master brewer, purchased the brewery and changed its name to Artois. Interbrew was formed in 1987 from the merger of Brasseries Artois, then the second largest brewer in Belgium, and Brasseries Piedboeuf, then the largest brewer in Belgium and the brewer of Jupiler.
Both of these brewers had a history of acquisitions with Brasseries Artois having acquired the Leffe brand in 1952, the Dommelsch Brewery in The Netherlands in 1968, and the Brasseries Motte Cordonier in France in 1970, while in 1984, Brasseries Piedboeuf had acquired the Lamot brewery in Belgium from Bass PLC. Interbrew soon acquired other Belgian speciality brewers, including Hoegaarden in 1989 and Belle-Vue in 1990. In 1991, they entered a phase of rapid expansion, and have since completed 30 acquisitions and strategic joint ventures, the largest of which were Labatt (Canada), Oriental Breweries (South-Korea), SUN Interbrew (Russia), Bass Brewers, Whitbread Beer Company (United Kingdom) and Diebels and Beck & Co (Germany). We acquired Labatt Brewing Company Limited, the second largest Canadian brewer, in 1995. With Labatt, we also acquired Rolling Rock in the United States and a 22% stake in the second largest brewer in Mexico, FEMSA Cerveza. At the time, the acquisition of Labatt nearly doubled our turnover. In 2000 we have acquired Bass Brewers and Whitbread Beer Company, excluding Whitbread Beer, and in 2001 we have acquired Diebels and Beck & Co in Germany.