Bell’s Brewery founder Larry Bell has reached an agreement with Lion, an Australian-based brewer, for the sale of Bell’s. Lion acquired Colorado’s New Belgium Brewing in 2019. The move will see the Michigan-based craft brewer come together with New Belgium, aligning two great American craft brewers.
Larry Bell, who founded Bell’s in 1985 and brewed its first beers in a 15-gallon soup kettle, shared the news – and announced his own retirement from the company he turned into a household name – at the company’s annual all-employee event.
The combination of the two breweries places the expanded company at the top of the U.S. craft beer market in sales volume and growth, with an extraordinary lineup of brands including the #1 IPA brand in the U.S., Voodoo Ranger, along with Fat Tire, Two Hearted Ale and Oberon Ale.
Bell’s decision to join New Belgium was based on the company’s commitment to the future stewardship of Bell’s iconic beer brands, its dedication to the ongoing successful operations of Bell’s in Comstock, Mich., and Upper Hand in Escanaba, Mich., and excitement around the opportunity to grow corporate social responsibility initiatives.
By aligning with New Belgium, Bell’s will expand on its own commitments to coworkers, communities and customers by adopting many hallmark, human-powered business practices—including seeking B Corporation certification, 100% carbon neutrality by 2030, $1 per barrel philanthropy and 100% score on the Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index.