sprague11 wrote:Crazy prediction for 2017: Two of the big Ontario craft brewers sell out to the big guys.
Interesting. Who are your guesses? If there were to be 2, I guess I would pick Beau's and Muskoka, but I'd be curious to hear if you have a different two in mind....
Beau's has been pretty adamant about remaining independent and put some employee stakeholder measures in place to do that, even though they probably would actually benefit from a buy out. It might up their game.
Muskoka is an interesting choice. They are very business like, so could probably be suited to making an unemotional decision (see big bag of money), but I also get the notion that they are happy with their autonomy and prefer to focus on making great product. It could be having a rural location puts less pressure on enterprise costs?
If I were betting on candidates, I think I would start with Amsterdam. They are already pretty much to scale, have brand pedigree and with the utility grade side of their catalogue have a huge hospitality footprint. Much like Mill Street was, I can see them as a target. Great Lakes are sort of in the same situation, but they probably have more room to build brand value before accepting a low ball offer. At the rate they are putting out great beers that aren't too plain goofy, they could be a good score for a bigger player in a few years and get even more out of their investment.
I'm also thinking Flying Monkeys could be open to a suitor, but they seem to have lost brand building steam by a lot of product overreach. I can't see them being a 'portfolio score' for someone.
Let's not forget Steamwhistle. Easy to plug into any portfolio and has brand recognition in a lot of Canada now. Would be a simple accountant to accountant conversation.
Somehow, I get the feeling Henderson is all about building a farm team to sell too, but I don't know enough about them to verify that.
Brands are for cattle.
Fans are cash cows.
The herd will consume until consumed.