Beer giant AB InBev continues expansion, buys a hip British craft brewery.

The Giant Company That Owns Budweiser Just Bought a Craft Brewery in London

The Giant Company That Owns Budweiser Just Bought a Craft Brewery in London

Business Insider
Analyzing the top news stories across the web
Dec. 21 2015 11:24 AM

The Giant Company That Owns Budweiser Just Bought a Craft Brewery in London

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Local flavor, corporate aftertaste?

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This post originally appeared on Business Insider.

Popular London craft brewery Camden Town is being bought by the world's biggest beer maker, AB InBev.

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Camden Town says in an emailed statement on Monday that the deal will "support the company’s plan to build a second brewery in London, employing 30 more people, and meeting growing demand for its products."

AB InBev, which makes world famous beers like Corona, Becks, Budweiser, and Stella Artois, is buying 100 percent of the 5-year-old brewery.

Camden Town's founder and CEO Jasper Cuppaidge told Business Insider: "The biggest rationale is security. We wanted to make sure that the brand was around for a long time and this capital investment gives us that security for our employees, for the brand, and also security to continue to make our beer as well as we have for the past 5 years."

Camden Town is investing up to $26.8 million in building a new brewing site in Enfield, North East London, and upgrading its North London headquarters in Camden. As part of the deal, AB InBev will contribute to this investment.

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Business Insider exclusively revealed back in June that Camden came close to being acquired by a global giant during a crowdfunding round in May.

Cuppaidge told Business Insider on Monday: "We've talked to a lot of people over a long time but it took us some time to get the deal right because obviously it's very important how we work together as companies.

"They're a fantastically well-established brewing company and we're a young brewing company. It's important that not only the investment was right but also that the relationships were right. That took some time, to get to a place where I was comfortable."

The takeover price is not mentioned in the email and Cuppaidge declined to share it. Shareholders who bought in during a crowdfunding campaign in May are being notified today by email so we'll get a better idea then. That round valued Camden at $111.7 million, later cut to $74.4 million in a secondary round.

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Cuppaidge says: "For the amount of time they've been with us, I'd be very happy if I was a Crowdcube investor."

Camden Town, founded in 2010, was one of the trailblazers of the recent British craft brewing boom. It's known for beers such as Camden Pale, Gentleman's Wit, and Hells Lager.

AB InBev is in the midst of another, much bigger takeover. The U.S.-Belgian company is buying rival SABMiller for $105.7 billion. As part of that deal AB InBev plans to sell-off another London craft brewery, Meantime, which SAB bought earlier this year.

Cuppaidge said that Camden Town would not change despite selling out to a global beer goliath. He says: "I'm on watch. I'm not going anywhere. I'm the CEO of Camden Town Brewery and I'm going to be around forever. Nothing's going to change."

"They liked our beers which is why they approached us—why would they want to change anything?"