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No Momentum Thru May; Taxpaid Shipments -2.2% for 5 Mos; Total Biz Off Slightly

Just as scans slowed in May, taxpaid shipments by domestic brewers nuthin’ to shout about either. May shipments down 325K bbls, 2%, estimates Beer Inst. For 5 mos, taxpaids -1.6 mil bbls, 2.2%. Recall, imports up double-digits thru Apr. That reduces yr-to-date decline by over 1 mil bbls. So latest yr-to-date shipments off about 600K bbls, 0.7%, a little better if you toss in cider gain, tho cider continues to slow to low double-digits in scans. June is soft comp for taxpaids (-1.1% last yr), but so was May. Imports going against modest gain last May, but big double-digit increases for rest of summer.


Pabst Brings On Chris Barrow, Former Head of Heineken’s Global Strategy

Interesting hire by Pabst ceo Eugene Kashper, suggests multiple deals and international partnerships ahead. Pabst hired Chris Barrow as “Strategic Advisor” to Eugene, effective Jul 1. Chris will lead Pabst M&A efforts and be responsible for key international partnerships as well as ongoing efforts to expand US craft and imports. Chris has lotsa experience doing deals and running bizzes at sr levels in global beer game. Worked both at Heineken where he was responsible for Global Strategy and served on Executive Committee as well as at SABMiller, where he was Asia Director and did a lot of deals in China. He also ran two billion dollar bizzes for Heineken, Poland and Brazil. Chris also familiar with the US as he was on the board of FIFCO, which owns NAB. Bringing on Chris one of several intriguing moves by Pabst in 1st yr under Eugene. Tho Pabst total volume not growing so far, Not Your Father’s Root Beer is taking off and “Q1 was better than our budget and a little better than last year from a profitability standpoint,” Eugene told INSIGHTS recently, “so the year is off to a positive start.”


Constellation Investment in Mexico Now Over $2 Bil; Rob Sands Meets Mexican Prexy

Constellation Brands ongoing project to expand its Nava, Mexico brewery and bottling operations will cost more than $2 bil, ceo Rob Sands noted during an appearance in Mexico City yesterday. That’s $500 mil more than what he had estimated cost to be back in Mar at Gold Network Summit. “Constellation Brands is investing because we believe that premium Mexican beer will keep growing and will keep leading this segment of the US beer market for years to come,” said Rob. Later same day, Rob met with Mexican president to discuss co’s investments there. “Constellation Brands is proud to be in Mexico and we are here to stay.” The Mexican president thanked Rob for “trusting” Mexico and “believing” in Mexico.