Microsoft founder Bill Gates is reportedly buying a large stake in the parent company of Bud Light following the brand’s decline since it announced a partnership with transgender activist Dylan Mulvaney. The software developer’s decision to purchase almost two million shares in Anheuser-Busch InBev could have major implications for the beverage company.
The billionaire’s new stake in the beer giant would represent almost $100 million in value, despite the recent decline in Anheuser-Busch’s stock price. The company has lost almost 10% of its value since it announced its marketing deal with Mulvaney in April.
The company has also seen a significant loss in its market share. Bud Light suffered a sharp decline since the announcement of the partnership, losing its place as the country’s number one best-selling beer to Modelo Especial.
While Big Light suffered a more-than 20% decline in volume sales in July and August, Modelo has seen its sales increase by about 10%.
They went from “Dylan Mulvaney drinks Bud Light” to “Bill Gates drinks Bud Light.” This is not an improvement. https://t.co/Sjjxuu0MGr
— Seth Dillon (@SethDillon) September 7, 2023
Anheuser-Busch has been forced to announce layoffs following the sweeping public boycott of its flagship brand. Furthermore, a bottler of the company’s beers also announced hundreds of job cuts earlier this year.
The heir to the Busch family offered to buy back the brand to try and restore its reputation. Billy Busch said that he was dismayed “to see this iconic brand now going in the direction it’s going, it’s really a sad day.”
He also said that Bud Light made a decision to be political, which he believes was a significant mistake.
“Those values were strength, they were pride, quality, honor, what this country is basically based on. And it was also built on fun and enjoyment and bringing people together. And it was never built on pushing a political agenda down your throat,” he said.
Anheuser-Busch’s CEO Brendan Whitworth also said that the company would work to fix the company’s reputation and would be “brewing great beer and earning our place in moments that matter to you.”