By Tess Stynes
Constellation Brands Inc. agreed to acquire Ballast Point Brewing & Spirits for roughly $1 billion, adding a craft beer maker to the alcoholic-beverage company’s beer business.
Constellation /zigman2/quotes/207737284/composite STZ -0.04% became one of the largest U.S. beer distributors in 2013 with its acquisition of U.S. distribution rights for top import Corona, several other Mexican beers plus a Mexican brewery for $5.3 billion from Belgium’s Anheuser-Busch InBev NV /zigman2/quotes/209225053/composite BUD +2.33% . That deal stemmed from AB InBev’s larger $20.1 billion takeover of Mexico’s Grupo Modelo SAB, in which AB InBev had to divest itself of the assets to win U.S. regulatory approval.
Constellation Chief Executive Rob Sands said in prepared remarks on Monday that “along with imports, craft beer is a key driver of growth and premiumization within the beer industry, with craft doubling its share of the U.S. beer market in the last five years.”
Ballast Point’s 2015 sales are projected at $115 million. The company is on track to sell more than 4 million cases of beer this year, more than double its sales volume from 2014.
The deal, set to close by year’s end, is expected to add between 5 cents a share and 6 cents a share to Constellation’s earnings for the fiscal year ending in February 2017.
An expanded version of this report appears at WSJ.com.