Bloomberg: Boston Beer Founder Becomes Billionaire

Jim Koch speaking at the 2013 Brewbound Session in Boston

With Boston Beer Company shares up ten-fold since 2009, Bloomberg Business reports that Jim Koch, the company’s founder and chairman, has officially joined the billionaire ranks.

Koch was 35 when he started Boston Beer in 1984. Now 64, Koch’s net worth is now more than $1 billion, according to Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

“I remind people getting rich is life’s great booby prize,” he told the news organization. “Any normal person would much rather be happy than rich.”

In 2012, Boston Beer shipped more than 2.7 million barrels of its products, including the Samuel Adams line of beers, Angry Orchard line of ciders and Twisted Tea flavored malt beverages. The company reported revenues of approximately $629 million, up 13 percent from the year before.

Much of Boston Beer’s recent success is attributed to the growth of its Angry Orchard and Twisted Tea brands. The entire Angry Orchard brand family has experienced record growth of nearly 500 percent in 2013, generating over $54 million of sales, in U.S. drug, supermarket, mass, and convenience retailers through Aug. 25, according to Chicago-based research firm IRI. Angry Orchard dollar sales are 47 percent of all U.S. cider sales, while sales of Twisted Tea also grew by 12.7 percent, to over $82 million during the same period.

Boston Beer’s Samuel Adams line of craft beer offerings, which comprise a bulk of the company’s production, are also up 15.3 percent year-to-date, according to IRI. Through Aug. 25, Samuel Adams seasonals are the company’s top performing style at U.S. multi-outlets and convenience, with nearly $69 million in sales.

Boston Beer Company stock traded as low as $19 per share in March, 2009. The stock is currently trading at $225.