Wow. The world’s largest brewery has, in just five days, added three new breweries to its craft portfolio. Last Friday it was Arizona’s Four Peaks. Yesterday we learned that AB InBev had snapped up London’s Camden Town Brewery. Today it was Colorado’s Breckenridge:
Anheuser-Busch has made a play for a piece of Colorado’s craft brew market, snapping up Breckenridge Brewery for an undisclosed sum, officials announced Tuesday.
Breckenridge, which sells its beers to 35 states, is on track to produce 70,000 barrels of beer in 2015. Earlier this year, Breckenridge departed its downtown-area Denver digs for a 12-acre brewery and restaurant in Littleton. The 25-year-old company is Colorado’s sixth largest craft brewer by barrels produced, according to The Brewers Association data.
We were playing a little game on Facebook of trying to guess which brewery would go next. It’s possible someone might have rung in with Breckenridge (one commenter was on the right track with Avery and Great Divide), but the damn thing happened too fast for a robust sample to gather. I will leave you with the newly-updated map of the Little Buds and their national distribution:
Various comments/questions. (1) Interesting that ABI seems to be focused on blue states (a fact made more obvious by my use of an electoral college calculator to generate these maps)–does this mean North Carolina or Florida is more likely to be the first southern state than, say, Georgia? (2) Some enterprising young journalist (Bryan Roth?) should look to see what the distribution ramifications are in these states. I continue to believe that’s a huge part of this equation. (3) Which brewery is next, and (4) how many breweries do you expect ABI to buy stateside before it feels it has collected enough to make a big push into the craft segment?