Colorado’s largest craft brewery announces sale to international beer conglomerate |

Colorado’s largest craft brewery announces sale to international beer conglomerate

The maker of Fat Tire will merge with Lion Little World Beverages by the end of 2019

Fat Tire beer
Cases of Fat Tire headed for palletizing at the New Belgium Brewing plant in Fort Collins on June 19, 2007.
Brian Brainerd, The Denver Post

In another major blow to the Colorado beer industry in the last two months, New Belgium Brewing on Tuesday announced that after nearly 30 years in the craft beer business, the employee-owned company is selling to Australian-based Lion Little World Beverages, a subsidiary of Japanese company Kirin Holdings Company Limited.

New Belgium is currently the largest craft brewery in Colorado and the fourth-largest in the U.S., behind Yuengling, Boston Beer and Sierra Nevada, according to the Brewers Association. The Fort Collins-based brewery’s cash sale, for an undisclosed amount, is expected to finalize by the end of the year, pending approval by employee stock owners.

More than 300 of New Belgium’s employee-owners will receive more than $100,000 in retirement money through the deal, “with some receiving significantly greater amounts,” New Belgium founder Kim Jordan wrote in a letter on Tuesday.

According to New Belgium CEO Steve Fechheimer, the brewery employs nearly 700 people between Fort Collins, Denver and Asheville, N.C. — where a second New Belgium brewery opened in 2016 — and across the country on its sales team.

Read the full story on The Denver Post website.

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