Bud Light Lost Over A BILLION Dollars Following Dylan Mulvaney Partnership

Dylan Mulvaney Bud Light
Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Must be nice to lose a billion dollars still be up and running, eh?

It’s no secret that Bud Light’s decision to partner with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney was a colossal mistake. Following an “explosive” act of protest by Kid Rock, we saw a ton of Bud Light drinkers turn their backs on the beer, and when Bud Light began to see a drastic decline in sales, they sent out an “apology,” of sorts, which ultimately resulted in a ton of LGBTQ supporters denouncing the beer for turning its back on them and not supporting Dylan.

Anheuser-Busch got the heat from both worlds, and it ultimately led to a drastic decline in sales. And then it got worse. Alissa Heinerscheid, the marketing VP who was behind the Mulvaney commemorative can (it wasn’t a company-wide decision), dug her heels in even further when she called the brand’s identity “fratty” and “out of touch,” a dig at Bud’s core fanbase. She has since taken a “leave of absence,” following the backlash. Modelo has since surpassed Bud Light as America’s favorite beer.

And now here we are, almost a year later, Anheuser-Busch’s 4th quarter numbers from last year are out and, to nobody’s surprise…. they lost a TON of money. Over $1.4 BILLION. According to CNN, the brand specifically cited Bud Light as the culprit for declining revenues:

“Q4: Revenue declined by 17.3% with sales-to-retailers (STRs) down by 12.1%, primarily due to the volume decline of Bud Light. Sales-to-wholesalers (STWs) declined by 16.1% as shipments lagged stronger depletions in December… EBITDA declined by 34.2%, with approximately two thirds of this decrease attributable to market share performance and the remainder from productivity loss, increased sales and marketing investments and support measures for our wholesaler partners.

FY23: Revenue declined by 9.5% with revenue per hl growth of 3.7%. STWs declined by 12.7% and STRs were down by 11.9%. EBITDA decreased by 23.4%”

And while AB was still highly profitable, and saw a 7% increase in EBITDA over the year last year, they confess that they were expecting over a billion more, and that the United States market hurt the overall performance. They’re calling it a learning experience, which I’m going to assume it definitely was:

“While our full growth potential was constrained by the performance of our US business, we remained true to our purpose and laser focused on the execution of our strategy… there was success to celebrate and challenges from which to learn. We are taking the learnings and moving forward in a stronger position to realize our full growth potential.”

Of course, Kid Rock recently revealed that Anheuser-Busch US CEO Brendan Whitworth flew down to Nashville to meet with him and figure out how they could work together to rehab the brand’s image among some of its loyal followers. I can’t imagine we’ll see anything come of that, and Kid Rock admitted as such.

Meeting With Kid Rock

Kid Rock had nothing but kind words to say about CEO Brendan Whitworth. On a recent episode of The Joe Rogan Experience, Rogan and Kid Rock went on to talk about how they’ve both befriended Brendan Whitworth, the CEO of Anheuser-Busch, since the whole boycott went down.

Whitworth even visited Kid Rock in Nashville, and as Kid Rock put it, they “broke bread, got hammered up on Bud Light, and went bowling.” The musician went on to say that he talked to a team from Bud Light to figure out if there was any way he could help build back up the brand, but they could never come to an agreement on a path forward, even though Kid Rock apparently gave them some ideas that they wanted nothing to do with.

“We had a good meeting before hand trying to think if there’s something I could do with AB but I just didn’t feel comfortable with it. I threw out some ideas that scared the living eff out of them, but at the end of the day I don’t feel right taking their money… I don’t want any corporate deals, there isn’t a penny on Earth that could make me change who am or have people look at me in a different way. Even though it’s probably half the country that likes me and the other half that wants to put a bullet in me.

At the end of the day, they got the message and I’m not someone who holds a grudge. Honest to God, I was having a lot of fun… one of the things I told him, as a friend, somebody who doesn’t want to see this brand destroyed anymore…. ‘You got smacked… a pretty hard spanking, and I don’t want to hold your head underwater, drown this company and put people out of work… you got the message.”

You can hear more about it all in the interview:

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock