SweetWater Sells Minority Stake to TSG Consumer Partners

Another top-50 craft brewery has sold a piece of its business to private equity.

Atlanta’s SweetWater Brewing today announced that it has sold minority interest to TSG Consumer partners, a private equity firm that invests in middle-market consumer brands.

“Having recently had some folks in our investor pool who were ready to start allocating funds towards their kids’ college tuitions, we began looking for ways to create liquidity for some of the old timers while also bringing on a new minority partner that could potentially add long-term value to our brewery,” company founder Freddy Bensch said in a statement.

Specific terms of the deal were not disclosed.

In the statement, Bensch described TSG as “likeminded people who share our solid core values.”

“Operationally speaking, SweetWater will remain unchanged whatsoever, and we will continue business as usual as we strive to keep making the best beer we possibly can,” Bensch said. “We look forward to the future and taking it to the next levelÔǪone beer at a time.”

SweetWater is the third craft brewery to announce a private equity transaction in the last 30 days. Earlier this month, New York’s Southern Tier Brewing said it had sold partial ownership to Ulysees Management LLC. In September, Utah’s Uinta Brewing announced it had sold a percentage of its business to The Riverside Company.

It’s also worth noting that TSG recently partnered with Russia’s Oasis Beverage to purchase Pabst Brewing. TSG has previously invested in beverage companies including Muscle Milk owner Cytosport and Vitaminwater maker Glaceau. The company has offices in New York City and San Francisco.

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