Anheuser-Busch’s First Quarter Report Reveals Steep Decline in US Sales Volume

Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world’s largest beer company, released its first-quarter earnings report on Wednesday, revealing a mixed bag of results.

While the company saw a 2.6 percent increase in global revenues, largely driven by strong sales of its Corona brand outside of Mexico, it also experienced a significant 9.1 percent decrease in revenues in the United States, according to a new report from the Epoch Times.

The decline in U.S. sales, which was primarily attributed to a drop in Bud Light volume, is believed to be a lingering effect of the brand’s controversial partnership with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney in 2022.

Despite the challenges faced in the American market, Anheuser-Busch’s overall performance exceeded Wall Street’s expectations, with revenue rising to $14.5 billion, surpassing the forecast of $14.3 billion.

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CEO Michel Doukeris expressed optimism about the company’s results, stating, “The strength of the beer category, our diversified global footprint and the continued momentum of our megabrands delivered another quarter of broad-based top-and bottom-line growth.”

He further added that the consistent execution by the company’s teams and partners reinforces their confidence in achieving their 2024 growth ambitions.

The Bud Light controversy began when the company sent Mulvaney, a biological male who identifies as female, a pack of beers featuring his face to celebrate his 365 days of identifying as a woman and to promote the company’s “March Madness” contest.

This decision led to a significant backlash from consumers, resulting in a boycott of Bud Light and a loss of up to $6.5 billion in stock value for Anheuser-Busch within days. The company subsequently issued an apology in an attempt to mitigate the damage.

Despite the challenges faced in the U.S. market, Anheuser-Busch reported revenue growth in other key markets, such as Europe, Mexico, Brazil, and Colombia.

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The company’s normalized earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) also increased by 5.4 percent to nearly $5 billion, while net income grew 15 percent to $1.5 billion, or 75 cents per share, surpassing Wall Street’s expectation of a 65-cent profit.