Posted in Anchor Brewing, Headlines

Anchor Brewing closes after 127 years

Anchor Brewing Company, founded in 1896, is closing its doors for good.

Just about a month ago, Anchor announced Christmas Ale, a beloved seasonal that has been released continually for the last 47 years was no more. The move shocked much of the brewery’s fanbase.

Additionally, the brewery dropped distribution to 49 states, limiting sales to just California.

According to the brewery, the fallout from the pandemic, inflation, and the highly competitive market in Anchor’s hometown of San Franciso led to the difficult decision.

Sam Singer, a brewery spokesperson, tells Beer Street Journal that “Anchor has invested great passion and significant resources into the company. Unfortunately, today’s economic pressures have made the business no longer sustainable, and we had to make the heartbreaking decision to cease operations.”

In 2017, Japan’s Sapporo Holdings acquired the brewery.

Brewing Ends.

Anchor has officially stopped brewing beer. Any remaining beer will continue to be packaged and sold until the supply is depleted – which includes a small amount of Christmas Ale.

The Sell-Off.

Employees were informed of the closure on Tuesday, and were given 60 days with “transition support and separation packages.” Per Singer, Anchor is in the process of negotiating an arrangement with an Assignee to retain as part of a California Assignment for the Benefit of Creditors (“CA ABC”), an alternative to filing for Court-monitored federal Chapter 7 or 11. 

Under this process, Anchor will retain an Assignee to whom all its assets will be irrevocably assigned and then liquidated, the proceeds of which, the Assignee will use to pay off Anchor’s creditors.  Once selected and retained, the CA ABC Assignee will be wholly responsible for liquidating the company’s assets and paying creditors.

Singer also mentioned Anchor, and presumably Sapporo, had been looking for a buyer the brewery and brands over the course of the last year, with no success.