Dear Client: Yesterday, FIFCO USA shared news that its current CEO, Adrian Lachowski, “has reached the end of his two-year assignment” as chief of the company. He will officially leave the company on January 15, and could potentially “rejoin the organization in Latin America” sometime next year. FIFCO USA did not share who would take … Continue reading “FIFCO USA to Name New CEO”

Dear Client: Many greenhorns in the industry may not know this, but 3.2 beer was a holdover after the repeal of Prohibition.  (By the way, happy belated Repeal Day, December 5th).  What we call Repeal today actually occurred in two phases, and this created the genesis of 3.2 beer. First, Congress passed the Cullen-Harrison Act … Continue reading “The Slow Death of 3.2 Beer”

Dear Client: If anyone thought Constellation has lost interest or heart in its big cannabis bet, Canopy Growth, the appointment of current STZ CFO David Klein to CEO of Canopy would strongly suggest otherwise.  Constellation chief Bill Newlands called the transition of David, who has been their CFO since June 2015, “a great career opportunity … Continue reading “Constellation CFO David Klein to be New Canopy Growth CEO”

Dear Client: D-Day is December 17.  That’s when Canada will see legalization of edibles and THC-infused beverages.  Canopy Growth has been hosting both media and analyst days at its Smiths Falls Campus in Ontario (Canada). They were showing off their manufacturing and beverage facilities before Dec. 17. MKM Partners analyst Bill Kirk (full disclosure: related … Continue reading “Constellation/Canopy Preparing For D-Day”

Dear Client: A few things stood out to us from Nielsen’s presentation (thanks Danelle Kosmal and Caitlyn Battaglia) on hard seltzer trends at Brewbound Live yesterday.   One, hard seltzer drinkers are “harder” drinkers, if you will: Hard seltzer drinkers fork over $219 more on alcohol than the average tippler. In fact, they spend $477 a … Continue reading “Hard Seltzer Drinkers Spend Almost Twice the Normal Drinker on Alcohol”

Dear Client: We now know at least how Wall Street feels about Constellation’s decision to unload Ballast Point at a vastly reduced price to focus on higher-margin categories.  Cowen analyst Vivien Azer says the divestiture will allow Constellation to redeploy resources. “Since taking over as CEO, Bill Newlands has established a clear mandate to focus … Continue reading “Grokk-Grokk-GrokkaKhan”

Dear Client: A couple of weeks ago, the newly styled Molson Coors Beverage Company announced a minority stake in non-alc beverage producer and incubator, L.A. Libations, which has hatched or helped grow giant new age beverage names, like Core Water, Zico Coconut Water, Body Armor, Arriba Chelada and more. But we wondered more about L.A. … Continue reading “Who is L.A. Libations?”

Dear Client: As was reported in BBD this morning, Constellation is indeed divesting of Ballast Point. Chicago-based Kings & Convicts Brewing Co. is taking over.  The two-year-old company out of Illinois just inked a deal with Constellation to acquire basically everything Ballast Point, besides the production facility in Daleville, Virginia, which Constellation will maintain as … Continue reading “Constellation To Sell Ballast Point”

Dear Client: It’s no secret that Constellation has spent a good chunk of this year looking to unload brands and assets that they no longer want or need.  The company’s garage sale, so to speak, began this spring when they cut a deal with Gallo to sell off more than 30 wine and spirits brands, … Continue reading “What’s Next for Ballast Point?”

Dear Client: Our story on Boston Beer Co. and Dogfish Head’s challenges in distributor integration elicited a response from a craft brewer which started:  “Harry, cut to the chase …. this is a Sheehan – Boston Beer issue and then a whole lot of little issues.” We don’t like to report on ongoing deals that … Continue reading “How Important is Distributor Alignment?”

Dear Client: Last Friday, e-commerce bev alc platform Drizly released the results of its first-ever survey on independent bev alc retailers — both those who partner with Drizly, and those who don’t. It revealed insights about how these types of retailers are setting their shelves, who they see as their biggest competition, and more. Some … Continue reading “Inside the Mind of an Independent Retailer”

Dear Client: You know what I’m talking about.  College kids, post-grads, and even 30-somethings coming back to their hometown to visit their folks for Thanksgiving, and on the Wednesday night before, they huddle up in their old local haunts to meet with their old high school friends over a few bevs. It’s the big on-premise … Continue reading “The Huge Beer Drinking Holiday Nobody Talks About”

Dear Client:  Let’s face it, distributor integration is the hardest part of any small or even large brewery integration.  There are still “A-B” distributors out there that only carry Stella Artois or Rolling Rock.    And Boston Beer founder Jim Koch has always said that he shied away from acquisitions of other brewers specifically because the … Continue reading “Boston Beer and Dogfish Head Having “Challenging and Nuanced” Time on Distributor Integration”

Dear Client:  Mike’s Hard is targeting close to $2 billion in revenue this year, “on track to grow 85%,” after having accelerated each year for almost a decade.  But the real shocker is that they’re targeting twice that next year,  to $4 billion in 2020 “driven by increased capacity, household penetration, distribution and velocity growth,” … Continue reading “More Mike’s: $4 Bill in Revenues Next Year; No Debt; Sourcing More From Wine than Spirits”

Dear Client:  At the BMI seminar in New York, two former Big Beer execs — Ed McBrien, COO, Manhattan Beer Distributors (formerly president of sales and distributor operations at MillerCoors) and Evan Athanas, CEO Chesapeake Beverage (formerly of A-B), talked about life on the “other” side of the business.  Many distributors would probably be heartened … Continue reading “Top Distribs Having a Good Year, Thanks to Seltzer, Mexican Imports and Guinness”