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Thursday, August 10, 2017

making HEADlines:

FLORIDA'S FUNKY BUDDHA BREWERY ACQUIRED BY CONSTELLATION BRANDS


 August 10, 2017: Rumors had been swirling for months that Funky Buddha Brewery had been sold to one of the large beer "big boys." When the announcement was made earlier today that the South Florida brewery had been sold to Constellation Brands, the purchaser was likely a surprise to most. 









In a press release, Constellation Brands stated that Funky Buddha joins the company's "Craft & Specialty Beer Group." The stated purpose behind the acquisition is to "reinforc[e] [Constellation's] strategy to lead the high-end beer segment in the United States." Funky Buddha Head Brewer and President Ryan Sentz summed up the brewery's position: “We chose to partner with Constellation because we saw an alignment in vision and felt they gave us the greatest opportunity for growth and development." Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The announcement was made the day after the Florida Brewers Guild held its inaugural Florida Brewers Conference. 

Constellation Brands made headlines in November 2015 when it paid an unprecedented $1 billion for Ballast Point Brewery in San Diego. Prior to that, Constellation was known mostly for its Mexican imports (Corona, Modelo, Pacifico). With this announcement, it appears that Constellation is positioning itself as a major player in the "high-end" craft beer market. 

News of the story broke through Brewbound in the morning. This writer was departing the host hotel from the Florida Brewers Conference and relayed the story on social media about 13 minutes thereafter. Later in the evening, Brewbound reported further that Constellation is looking to acquire additional "local" breweries in strategic markets such as Illinois, Texas and New York.  Rumors are already circulating on social media as to which brewery will be acquired next. 


Cheers,
Linda Johnson,
Certified Cicerone®