Boston Beer has struggled to boost its performance as the craft beer industry gets more crowded. Drinkers now have more than 4,000 craft breweries to choose from, and the Boston-based company is losing market share. According to Credit Suisse Group AG’s Laurent Grandet, acquisition could result if turnaround fails, and Molson Coors is the most agreeable candidate as a buyer.
Anheuser-Busch InBev, via its High End craft and import division, has acquired the remainder of Michigan’s Virtue Cider, the company announced today. Now that A-B owns 100 percent of the Michigan cidery, it can “fully integrate” the brand into its wholesaler network.
Jeff Bitter, vice president of operations for the Allied Grape Growers, said from what he’s seen and heard he is now expecting California’s total wine grape crop will be less than the expected average of 4.2 million tons. According to Steve Matthiasson, a Napa-based vineyard consultant, Chardonnay suffered a little shatter and is down slightly, Merlot is way down, but Cabernet Sauvignon is doing quite well. According to Alison Crowe, director of winemaking for Plata Wine Partners, seeds are brown, and tannins appear to be developing faster than sugar, and that she is hopeful Cabernet Sauvignon will hit full flavor.
Alcohol e-commerce platform Drizly has signed up the former head of Wal-Mart Stores Inc.’s U.S. unit as it competes against Amazon.com Inc. for dominance in the online drinks market. Bill Simon, who served as chief executive officer of the retail giant’s U.S. operations from 2010 to 2014, was appointed to Drizly’s board of directors, according to the startup. Simon previously worked at Diageo Plc, where he helped develop Smirnoff Ice. At Wal-Mart, he helped expand alcohol sales. Drizly works with retail stores in more than 70 cities to fuel its online platform, which lets customers order booze and have it delivered to their door. The big opportunity lies in getting the app onto the screens of more consumers, Simon said.