Whatever is the polar opposite of “the gift that keeps on giving,” Anheuser-Busch InBev seems to have stumbled on exactly that following a catastrophic partnership with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney.
To wit, Bud Light, one of parent company Anheuser-Busch’s flagship beer brands, has come under incredible scrutiny following a brief relationship with Mulvaney.
The transgender influencer received a commemorative can with his face emblazoned on it, and also drank some Bud Light in some promotional social media posts.
In short: It was a disastrous move by Bud Light and its suddenly beleaguered parent company.
Here is a cheat sheet on all the ways that the Mulvaney partnership has afflicted the beer brand:
- Sales of Bud Light have absolutely cratered, and the company suddenly needs an influx of Chinese customers to soften its revenue reports.
- The market value of Bud Light has plummeted by at least $15 billion.
- Those abysmal sales have caused (at least) two executives, countless marketing employees, and 645 plant workers to lose their jobs.
- The brand itself is as toxic and unsavory as its ever been.
- Bud Light itself has received the dreaded “death star” from Costco.
- Bud Light sold off part of its craft beer catalog to help offset the losses.
That last bullet point is of particular note because it appears the beverage titan is not done hacking away at its craft beer catalog to help mitigate some of those disastrous and aforementioned issues.
According to Forbes, AB InBev is set to sell off a sizable chunk of its craft beer catalog to cannabis company Tilray Brands for “a price equal to $85 million in cash.”
The sale will include “all employees, breweries, four production facilities, and eight brewpubs nationwide.”
More than just the logistics, however, Tilray’s biggest get of this sale appears to be the popular Shock Top beer brand, which are generally known for being fruitier flavored beer.
Between Shock Top and the other seven brands included in the sale, Tilray is set to grow exponentially.
As Forbes reports, Tilray, which is the “largest cannabis company in the world, just made a move that will also make it the fifth-largest craft brewer and fifteenth-largest overall brewer in the United States.”
That’s a sizable jump in operations — and it all appears to stem from Bud Light working with Mulvaney and all of the fallout associated with that disastrous decision.
But one company’s failures are another company’s jet fuel, and Tilray has been planning this type of aggressive expansion for months now.
In a 2022 interview with Forbes, Tilray president Irwin D. Simon outlined his plans for his cannabis company.
“I very much want us to be a branded consumer products company, focusing on adult-use cannabis, medical cannabis, the beer category, the spirits category, and where it makes sense, we will have infused foods,” Simon told Forbes in 2022. “Our strategy is very different than anybody else out there. There are no cannabis companies that own alcohol brands today. We will continually look for companies and brands that have an established presence that we can build into a powerful portfolio.”
Apparently, the key catalyst in Mr. Simon’s plans for his “powerful portfolio” would end up being the damage left in the wake of a wildly divisive transgender influencer.
Who could’ve guessed?
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
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