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AB InBev Buys out Another Craft Brew

Devils Backbone says selling will allow the brewery to grow

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Devils Backbone/Facebook

Global beer goliath Anheuser-Busch InBev is wading deeper into the craft beer market. The Belgium-based company announced has purchased Roseland, Virginia's Devils Backbone Brewing Co. Terms of the deal were not released. In a statement posted to Devils Backbone's Facebook page, founder Steve Crandall said the decision to sell was based on expansion goals.

"For the past year we've been exploring options for a long-term solution that would enable us to continue expanding our business of brewing consistent, high-quality craft beer," Crandall said. "As I evaluated our options, ABI's The High End rose to the forefront as a support team that believed in our dreams. We had many discussions and the more we spoke with ABI, the clearer it became that The High End shares our passion. All of our senior management are on board with this new direction and in it for the long haul."

The High End is AB InBev's "business unit comprising unique craft and import brands." Crandall said his new parent company will support the craft brewer "as we build out our dream of what Devils Backbone can become." The deal will allow the brewery to expand its production and entertainment facilities in Virginia.

AB InBev has gone on a craft beer shopping spree in recent years, notes USA Today, purchasing the likes of Goose Island, Blue Point Brewing, Elysian Brewing, and Breckenridge Brewery. All of this business has come at the same time as the company consistently takes potshots at craft beer and its drinkers, and seemingly makes life more difficult for craft brewers.

In addition to the craft purchase, Yahoo Finance reports AB InBev will divest SABMiller's 58 percent stake in MillerCoors to Molson Coors Brewing Co. TAP for roughly $12 billion, in order to satisfy United States regulators. AB InBev reached a deal to purchase SABMiller, its top rival, last November. That acquisition makes the company a producer of one-third of the world's beer.