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Athletic Brewing raises $50 million as nonalcoholic wave sweeps beer making

Jul 9, 2024 | blog

Company founder Bill Shufelt (left) and head brewer John Walker pause on the Athletic Brewing’s nonalcoholic brewery and manufacturing plant on March 20, 2019 in Stratford, Connecticut.
Spencer Platt | Getty Images

Leading nonalcoholic brewer Athletic Brewing Company introduced Tuesday it is raised a further $50 million in fairness financing in a spherical led by General Atlantic. 

The firm expects General Atlantic to “ultimately invest significantly beyond that,” Athletic CEO and founder Bill Shufelt instructed CNBC’s “Squawk Box” Tuesday morning. The brewer plans to make use of the newest funding to extend manufacturing capability and develop its choices at world retailers to satisfy rising client demand for nonalcoholic beer.

“We are passionate about transforming the way modern adults drink and converting critics into believers. We’re at the start of a long-term trend, and we couldn’t be more excited to have General Atlantic by our side as Athletic begins its next phase of growth,” the corporate mentioned in a press launch.

Athletic Brewing launched its nonalcoholic craft brewing services in 2018 and has since grown to change into the tenth largest U.S. craft brewery and twentieth largest general U.S. brewing firm, regardless of solely providing nonalcoholic choices, in accordance with rankings by the Brewers Association. 

Athletic holds over 19% market share inside nonalcoholic beer and is driving 32% of whole nonalcoholic beer class progress, in accordance with NielsenIQ information.

“Revenue has more than doubled since our Series D [funding round] about 18 months ago,” Shufelt mentioned on CNBC.

The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday the corporate’s valuation has additionally doubled with the newest fundraising and now stands at $800 million.

The firm at present has two brewing services within the U.S., one in Milford, Connecticut, and the second in San Diego. Athletic not too long ago introduced the acquisition of a 3rd U.S. brewing facility, additionally positioned in San Diego. Once operational, Athletic expects the ability to assist double its U.S. brewing capability.

“We sold well over 3 million cases, over a 100 million cans, did over $90 million in revenue last year as a company, and we are growing well above that this year,” Shufelt mentioned.

The firm’s success is basically attributed to rising well being and wellness developments which might be driving client curiosity in nonalcoholic drinks.

More than 40% of Americans say they’re actively attempting to drink much less alcohol in 2024, in accordance with latest information by NCSolutions. That share jumps to 49% when surveying millennials and 61% for Generation Z, in accordance with the information.

Established beer firms like Heineken, Constellation Brands-owned Corona, Anheuser-Busch’s Budweiser and even Diageo’s Guinness have additionally hopped on the pattern, introducing nonalcoholic beer choices of their very own.

“We want to give people beer they can drink seven nights a week and feel good about,” Shufelt mentioned. “We’ve invested over $100 million in our manufacturing which has really differentiated quality that this segment has never seen before.”

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