Beer-Can Bearing Trump's Mug-Shot Hits Major Milestone: CEO

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by Tyler Durden
Tuesday, Oct 03, 2023 - 02:40 PM

Authored by Jack Phillips via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

A beer brand that was launched earlier this year as an alternative to Bud Light amid a months-long boycott has shattered its own company records by marketing a special edition can that featured former President Donald Trump's mug shot, according to the company's head.

Ultra Right Beer CEO Seth Weathers told Fox News last week that the special edition can was launched after President Trump's mug shot was taken in August after he was indicted in Fulton County, Georgia, on racketeering and other charges stemming from his activity following the 2020 election.

Mr. Weathers told Fox Business that sales of the limited edition offering have amounted to more than five tractor-loads of cans, saying that it's now the "most sought-after collector beer can in American history."

"We knew people would go wild over these collector cans, but we had no idea the response would be this crazy," he said in a recent statement, adding that sales of the beer would top $2 million by 11:59 p.m. on Oct. 1 when it's taken off the market.

Sales of the can "have poured in from the moment we launched," Mr. Weathers said. "With over $1 million in beer and merchandise sales, we’ve raised over $50,000 for the legal defense of the Georgia Trump electors and the Georgia Republican Party. Conservative Dad’s Ultra Right Beer puts our money where our mouth is—we’re doing our part to fight back against the unjust persecution of American patriots."

The company touts its product as "100 percent American beer," according to its website, and states that 10 percent of the beer's sales will be donated to the Georgia Republican Party legal defense fund and the David Shafer Legal Defense Fund.

As for President Trump, the 2024 presidential candidate's campaign released mug-shot-inspired gear in August that included T-shirts, coffee mugs, and beer holders. Hours after the mug shot was taken at the Fulton County Courthouse, the former president posted the image on his X (formerly known as Twitter) account—the first and only time he's done so since he was allowed back on the platform after his account was suspended in January 2021.

President Trump's mug shot merchandise was still available on his website on Oct. 1.

Bud Light Update

In April, Bud Light created a backlash with its release of a promotional beer can featuring transgender activist Dylan Mulvaney in connection with the NCAA's March Madness. As images of the beer can went viral on social media, conservative social media influencers and celebrities suggested a consumer boycott of the brand, causing sales to plummet for months.

Anheuser Busch InBev, the parent company of Bud Light, said in early August that its U.S. revenue fell by about 10 percent in the second quarter as sales of Bud Light slumped. Revenue fell $395 million in North America, too, it said.

Bud Light's U.S. sales through retail stores have fallen by 25 percent or more since April, but the company said that they have stabilized.

Bud Light, made by Anheuser-Busch, sits on a store shelf in Miami on July 27, 2023. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

In an investors' call this summer, CEO Michel Doukeris said that AB InBev's U.S. team is working hard to win back consumers and that the stabilization comes with signs of improvement. Bud Light's loss has spelled gains for Coors Light and Miller Lite, brands of main U.S. rival Molson Coors.

Last week, analysts with Bank of America upgraded Anheuser-Busch InBev’s stock to buy from neutral, although they stressed that in the United States, it’s “hard not to be negative” amid the boycott.

The top bank lifted AB InBev's price target to $68 from $65, according to MarketWatch. Cost of goods sold (COGS) pressures have begun to ease on the brand, while analysts cited how the brand is doing business in Latin America.

“Over the last few years, [Anheuser-Busch InBev] has transformed its business in many of its key markets [particularly in Latin America], with a more effective portfolio strategy, stepped-up innovation, and digitization of its route-to-market with BEES (B2B), a clear competitive advantage,” said analysts led by Andrea Pistacchi.

However, they cautioned that it’s “hard not to be negative” about the brand’s U.S. volume outlook. They predicted that the permanent profit damage to Anheuser-Busch InBev because of the Bud Light backlash may exceed $1 billion, CNBC reported.

Reuters contributed to this report.