Stab Magazine | Mick Fanning, Joel Parkinson and Josh Kerr Just Sold Balter Beer
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Mick Fanning, Joel Parkinson and Josh Kerr Just Sold Balter Beer

It pays to drink beer…or at least brew it.

news // Dec 6, 2019
Words by stab
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Like a good party, knowing when to arrive and when to exit is imperative. And after getting the party started at Balter Brewing Company in 2016, Mick Fanning, Joel Parkinson, Bede Durbidge, Josh Kerr, Ant McDonald and their 46 investors are preparing to make for the backdoor with a pocket full of cash.

After all of the swirling rumors, announced today, Balter has been sold to Carlton & United Breweries (CUB), a subsidiary of Asahi. The deal is rumored to be worth somewhere in the neighborhood of $200 million, but that’s just what’s blowing on the breeze at the moment and the specifics have not been released at this time.

Balter is currently the sixth-most-profitable independent brewery in the Australia and the fastest-growing with $8-million year-on-year growth.

“We’re a brand which has high aspirations,” McDonald, the company’s CEO, told the press.

Prior to Balter’s founding in 2016, Josh Kerr was heavily invested in Saint Archer Brewery, an American brand that sold for a huge sum to MillerCoors in 2015. High off that success, Kerr dropped a chunk of his Saint Archer cash straight back the Australian brand, Balter, whose recent sale makes him 2-for-2 on big beer ventures.

These dual sales make Kerrzy one of the wealthiest professional surfers, full stop. Talk about an admirable business portfolio from the aerial savant. 

According to reports, there’s a clause in the Balter sale documents that makes sure all founders, staff, and recipes are guaranteed to be locked in for the next five years. And no Balter beer can be brewed at any CUB/Asahi brewery unless the team brewers sign off on it.

“We’ve always believed that good beer is for everybody and this is a great way to continue that mission of sharing ‘good beer, with enjoyment,’ and that it also means we’ll be able to manage the epic growth we’ve experienced since day one, in a way that won’t affect the quality of the beer, or the sanity of the people in the business,” explained head brewer Scotty Hargraves. “They can’t do any cross-brewing unless I approve it, which I’m not really intending to do.”

Purchasing CUB in 2016 for $16 billion, Asahi’s making big moves in Australia’s beer-drinking world and now controls nearly 50-percent of the Aussie market and owns two of the country’s top three beers, Victoria Bitter and Great Northern, as well as Balter. 

So, Mick, Joel, Kerrzy: the next round’s on you, or what?

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