Yuengling, the magnificent Philadelphia brewery, is heading west for the first time in its 191-year history.
DG Yuengling & Son and Molson Coors Beverage Company said Tuesday that they would set up a joint venture to brew and sell Yuengling beer in the western United States. The deal gives Yuengling a path to national expansion and creates an opportunity for revenue growth for Molson Coors as the producer of Coors Light and Blue Moon navigates declining beer sales.
So far, Yuengling has stayed mostly east of the Mississippi, where its flagship games and other beers are distributed in 22 states. While the joint venture will be responsible for the brand’s production and sales in the Midwest and West, DG Yuengling will remain a family-owned company and will continue to monitor expansion within its existing markets and others that it may add in the Northeast.
The exact details of the rollout will be determined in the coming months with the official launch in a year, said Wendy Yuengling, CEO of DG Yuengling.
Enlargement has long come for DG Yuengling, who has taken a slow and methodical approach to growth in its nearly two-century history. Part of this can be attributed to logistics: DG Yuengling has two breweries in Pennsylvania and one in Florida. Meanwhile, Chicago-based Molson Coors has seven U.S. breweries in states that include Colorado, California and Wisconsin.
By leveraging Molson Coors’ network of breweries, Yuengling beer can land west via traditional distribution channels for its fans, who will have to pack their brew in their checked-in luggage or the trunk of their cars.
Complete terms and conditions for the joint venture 50-50 were not disclosed.
The sales and production partnership comes in the midst of a time of turbulence in the American beer industry. After a year in which total beer sales, according to Brewers Association data, fell 2%, the pandemic quickly created upheaval for the breweries when restaurants and bars closed, saving large parts of sales. Breweries have also navigated the challenges of the supply chain as sales shifted sharply to liquor and grocery stores.
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