MillerCoors responds to Brewers Association bid to ‘buy’ AB InBev

US brewing company MilerCoors has said that the Brewers Association should consider buying “a few craft companies,” after the industry body launched a tongue-in-cheek campaign to “buy” AB InBev.

American trade group, The Brewers Association, recently unveiled its ‘Take Craft Back’ campaign in which it is seeking $213 billion to “buy” AB InBev in a fake crowdfunding drive.

Although the move is more of a well-organised gimmick to raise publicity, the Brewers Association hopes to draw attention to what it sees as big beer companies “permanently altering the craft landscape” and presenting “acquired brands as if they were truly, authentically independent”.

In an article on the MillerCoors beer blog Behind the Beer, questions were posed as to whether, if the Brewers Association did indeed buy AB InBev, it would allow its beers, such as Budweiser and Bud Light, to carry its craft beer seal.

Pete Marino, president of the MillerCoors craft division, Tenth and Black, said: “If the number of inbound calls that we are getting is any indication, more and more independent craft brewers are open to the idea, or at the very least exploring their options to partner with a large brewer or financial partner”.

In addition, he encouraged the Brewers Association to open its eyes to the business opportunities afforded by craft beer acquisitions.

“Maybe the BA should start by buying a few craft companies and see what kind of interest they get,’ Marino said.

In an email, also published on the blog, AB InBev spokeswoman, Gemma Hart, said: “We can take a joke! While the fake money for this campaign ‘piles’ up, we will keep focusing our donations on giving back to communities across our country”.

On its Take Craft Back website, the Brewers Association attacks big beer companies for “buying and starting beer blogs” in order to promote their beers. MillerCoors’ Tenth and Black division currently oversees its four craft beer acquisitions: Revolver, Terrapin, Saint Archer and Hop Valley.

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