The Chicago Tribune (free registration required) reports that Goose Island Beer Co. and brewing giant Anheuser-Busch are “in talks.”
Goose Island president and founder John Hall confirmed as much, but said discussions have been limited to “distribution issues.” He declined to comment further on the nature of the talks.
Adding a small brewer would answer demands from A-B wholesalers to add new products.
“Its wholesalers are clamoring for high-margin, growth brands,” said Benj Steinman, editor of Beer Marketer’s Insights, told the Tribune. “Anheuser has promised to deliver them, but they can’t just create them.”
A-B reportedly is talking with other microbreweries about distribution deals or taking a stake in the companies, including Old Dominion in Virginia.