Despite having admitted in the past that he’s “not a big beer drinker, Microsoft Founder and one of the world’s richest men, is buying in big to Anheuser-Busch.
Here’s the deal…
According to financial data firm TipRanks, Bill Gates recently made a $95 million bet in Bud Light, purchasing 1.7 million shares of Anheuser-Busch which is home to the embattled beer brand.
The 67-year-old billionaire who founded Microsoft in 1975 bought up the shares via his Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Trust during the second quarter of 2023.
Anheuser-Busch is still reeling from its short-lived relationship with Trans activist, Dylan Mulvaney which ignited an explosive backlash that ended in disaster.
Bud Light’s decision to showcase the Trans Tik Tok influencer on a special can spurred a Boycott Bud Light! online campaign, a video of Kid Rock shooting up a bunch of bud light beer cans that went viral, and a huge surge in online interest in the Samuel Adams Beer.
The initial Dylan Mulvaney announcement took place on April 1 (ironically April Fool’s Day) and in spite of Anheuser-Busch’s desperate efforts to put the matter to rest the brand has been experiencing serious sales declines ever since then.
After 22 years as the nation’s #1 beer, Bud Light has been dethroned by Modelo Especial, a Mexican beer brand that’s part of the Anheuser-Busch family everywhere in the world except in the US, where it brewed south of the border by Constellation Brands who sell it in the US.
“Anheuser-Busch’s share price has slipped nearly 9% over the past six months, and it’s down over 3%, to $56.08, in the past five days,” according to the New York Post, “a result of a national boycott of Bud Light that has shown no signs of slowing down.”
Bur clearly Bill Gates is betting big that Bud Light and its producer Anheuser-Busch is set for a rebound and his $95 million investment in the Belgian-based global brewer speaks to that.
This is not Gates first foray into big beer investments.
In February Gates, the richest man in the world for 15 consecutive years from 1995 to 2010, and again from 2013 to 2017, purchased a $904 million stake in Heineken, despite admitting in the past he is “not a big beer drinker”.
“When I end up at something like a baseball game I drink light beer to get with the vibe of all the other beer drinkers, he said in a 2018 interview with Reddit. ‘Sorry to disappoint real beer drinkers.”