Saw this news and couldn't help thinking (amid the screaming madness of finishing this damnable book) about how frenzied and almost silly all this looks. A-B just took over the importation of Grolsch last year, and now SABMiller is buying it out from under them, which is going to set off another small wave of wholesaler realignments, and chagrin at A-B over the money they spent on some very slick ads on the brand. Did SABMiller do it just to screw them? Probably not, but it must have made it tastier.
SABMiller has been calling the A-B strategy of getting more upscale brands to their wholesalers through strategic alliances a "funnel" strategy; that's what the whole business is starting to look like at the macro level. All the brands and brewers that make mainstream pilsneroid beer are being pushed and herded and squeezed into the ever-tighter neck of the funnel... No, wait. It's not a funnel, it's a horn. A sausage-stuffing horn. Yeah. It's all getting chopped and blended and made into one thing. I like sausage, but I don't think I like this.