News Constellation Sells Two Breweries Back to Original Owners – Will Exit Craft Beer Biz

In the second, and third such event in just a few weeks, the founders of two craft breweries are reacquiring the brewery back from a global brewer. The founders of Funky Buddha Brewery in Oakland Park, FL and Four Corners Brewing Co. in Dallas, TX are buying back the company they founded from Constellation Brands.

Initially founded as Funky Buddha Lounge and Brewery in 2010, the brewery was acquired by Constellation in 2017 as part of the craft brewery buying frenzy that global brewers partook in during the 2010’s. Four Corners was founded in 2013 and acquired by Constellation in 2018.

The acquisition follows the announcement just a few weeks ago that the original founders of Appalachian Mountain Brewery in North Carolina, were buying the brewery back from ABInBev. The original founders of three craft breweries buying their old brewery back from a global brewer in the short span of two weeks is notable to say the least. But it does make sense. In many of the acquisitions that were made by international brewing companies, the founders were kept on in some capacity to help guide the company. As the large brewers begin to determine that some of these acquisitions don’t pencil out, the founders are in the wings ready to buy the company back. Although financial details of the deals were not given in any of the three deals, the founders almost certainly paid less than they sold for. Even with increased sales, craft breweries are not selling today for nearly what they were in the 2010’s.

In the case of Constellation, the company has said they are making a “strategic decision” to focus on their core brands, according to a company statement. The company learned early on that acquiring craft breweries doesn’t necessarily work out. Constellation sold Ballast Point Brewing in 2019, just four years after buying it for $1 billion.

Just as we had the scripted quote from the sellers of craft breweries back when they were sold, we are now seeing the canned statement on the reacquisition.

“We enjoyed working with Constellation and we learned a lot from them. As we embark on the next chapter, we plan to push boundaries and create entirely new drinking experiences in beer and beyond,” Funky Buddha founder Ryan Sentz said in a press release. “We’ll be serving good vibes on tap for many years to come.”

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