Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Fly Away: The Death of a legendary American Brewery

Does this logo look familiar to you? I didn't think so. Remember that brewery in St. Louis , MO called Anheuser-Busch? They were established in 1860 and brewed the world's most popular brand called Budweiser. It was an iconic American brand, and a beer I drank quite a bit of in my youth. It was sad to me watching all the Super Bowl commercials featuring Bud Light and Bud Light Golden Wheat how Americans do not realize this in no longer an American company. A company that touts they brew "The Great American Lager". Please.
Welcome to the rich and wonderful history of the multi-national corporation that is AB InBev:
Anheuser-Busch InBev N.V. (AB InBev) is a publicly traded company, based in Leuven, Belgium. It is the largest global brewer with nearly 25% global market share and one of the world's top five consumer products companies by EBITA.
Anheuser-Busch InBev has 14 brands that generate over 1 billion USD per year in revenue out of a portfolio of nearly 300 brands. This portfolio includes global brands Budweiser, Stella Artois and Beck's, smaller multi-country brands like Staropramen, Leffe and Hoegaarden, and regional brands such as Bud Light, Skol, Brahma, Quilmes, Labatt's Blue, Michelob, Harbin, Sedrin, Cass, Klinskoye, Sibirskaya Korona, Chernigivske, and Jupiler.
The company employs 120,000 in over 30 countries. On a pro-forma basis for 2008, the combined company would have generated revenues of 26.5 billion euro.
Sorry AB InBev, but you will not be getting my business, ever. Here is an e-mail I had sent to a friend when InBev's hostile take over became final, and an iconic American brewery, and a big part of American brewing history died:
Inbev knows its an iconic brand, and they are not going to screw with that success. Again, I think it is a sad day for the American brewing industry. Yuengling, FX Matt, Straub, The Lion, Spoetz Brewing, these are the breweries that are the old school regionals we can still be proud of. And of course the outstanding craft brewers the likes of Anchor, Sierra Nevada, Boston Beer, etc. AB and Budweiser is dead to me now. I will never purchase another AB product again.
Just remember one thing? That Bud you are drinking? Its not your father's Budweiser anymore.


  1. While I may sample the new AB product just to see what they are up to, I don't buy their beer regularly. Miller and Coors are no more American these days.

    If I want American, I'll buy a micro. If I want to support a major American brewery I'll buy a beer from one of the breweries you mention. Yuengling and Sam Adams are readily available here, and I'll declare my independence from foreign-owned macro with one of them.

  2. I lost all respect for AB when they sold out. Really, there are no major American breweries now (Miller-Coors is also foreign owned). If I want American beer, I'll drink a micro/craft. If I want a major domestic, I'll drink one of the ones you mentioned.

    Yuengling and Sam Adams are everywhere, and I'll declare my independence from foreign-owned macrobrew swill with one of them.

    John, drinking a Smuttynose Robust Porter as I type.

  3. True. I don't think the average consumer knows that the "Big Three" (AB, Miller, Coors) are all foreign owned/multinational corporations and not American owned breweries.