Pabst up for sale again
Owner has tried to sell historic company before. Will new PBR sales momentum help this time?
Pabst has hired Bank of America (BAC) to push the deal, reports The New York Post, and wants to get about $300 million out of it.
Pabst brands own a special place in beer history, and include Schlitz, Colt 45 and Old Milwaukee. But the brand that may end up getting the company sold is Pabst Blue Ribbon, a hipster favorite that is seeing skyrocketing sales.
Since it doesn't own breweries, Pabst acts mainly as a marketing company, reports the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. It contracts out the beermaking to other brewers.
Despite its hardscrabble, old-school image, Pabst is actually owned by a charitable foundation in Northern California. But the Internal Revenue Service doesn't like charities to run for-profit companies, and is demanding a sale.
Problem is, no one wants to buy. The charitable foundation hasn't been able to find a buyer for years, and the IRS has extended its original 2005 sell deadline to 2010, reports the Chicago Tribune.
But Pabst now has a shining star in its family: Pabst Blue Ribbon. PBR sales are up 25% this year, NBC reports. Schlitz is also seeing a revival of sorts.
Pabst Brewing's overall sales have been dropping over the years, but 2008 saw a smaller decrease of only 3.3%.
Maybe Pabst can take advantage of the wave of buyouts that has hit the beer industry. Anheuser-Busch InBev (BUD) and North American breweries are the logical bidders, the Post reports.
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The company has made at least 4 acquisitions in the space, and few people have paid any attention.
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