Marco Environment Analysis

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The brewing industry as a whole accounts for $198 billion in output or 1.5% of U.S. GDP.36 The brewing industry in the United States consists of two major brewers: Anheuser-Busch and MillerCoors. SABMiller and Molson Coors formed MillerCoors as a joint venture in 2008; while, also in 2008, Anheuser-Busch was purchased by InBev, a Belgian company. Another strategic group in the beer industry consists of brewers that produce substantially less beer and have significantly less market share than the major brewers yet sell products with a higher retail price. This group consists of two different types of companies. Some companies in this group are not headquartered in the U.S., thus, their beer is classified as imports. Heineken and Crown Imports are two of the companies that fall into this category. Imports have gained market share in recent years and were reported to have a 14% market share in 2007 with almost 30 million barrels sold.37 Other companies in this group are classified as craft brewers with small, independent breweries producing unique beer. This group has, by far, the largest number of brewers and biggest variety of beer. Companies such as The Boston Beer Company, Sierra Nevada, and Craft Brewers Alliance are included in this group. In 2009, beer sales in the U.S. were down 2.2 percent, while sales of craft or specialty beer were up 10.3 percent.38 Despite flat or somewhat declining sales since the early 1980’s, activity in the industry has been vast. Rapid entry of small, craft brewers shifted the focus from premium and sub-premium beer to multiple varieties of unique, craft beer. As of July 2010, there were 20 traditional breweries and 1,599 specialty/craft breweries in the United States. Of the specialty/craft brewers, 994 are brewpubs, 534 are microbreweries, and 71 are regional craft breweries.39 While traditional breweries have steadily decreased from 403 in 1948 to 93 in 1968 to 31 in 1988 to the present number of 20; specialty/craft breweries...
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