Beau’s Brewing Co. and Steam Whistle Brewing have come to an agreement for the sale of the Vankleek Hill-based brewery operation. The two companies issued a joint press release the day after a February 28 meeting of Beau’s 129 shareholders.
The shareholders comprise a mix of the original investors in Beau’s at the company’s start up in 2006 and those employees who took advantage of the Employee Share Ownership Plan (ESOP) to buy shares in the company. Details of the purchase agreement between Steam Whistle Brewing and Beau’s Brewing Co. are confidential to the shareholders but almost 100 per cent of the 129 shareholders voted to accept the deal.
« Succession planning for the brewery has been on the horizon for Beau’s, starting with the ESOP we launched in 2016, » stated Steve Beauchesne, who co-founded the brewery with his father, Tim Beauchesne. « It has taken some time, as it was incredibly important to us to find new ownership that was value-aligned with Beau’s. »
Steve Beauchesne will continue to be part of Beau’s operations while his father, Tim, who is 71, will now retire. Beau’s Brewing, as a new subsidiary to Steam Whistle Brewing, will have its own board of directors, including Steve Beauchesne and Jennifer Beauchesne and three other directors appointed by Steam Whistle.
« Merging with Steam Whistle means that Beau’s continues to operate as an independent, Canadian craft brewery, » stated Steve Beauchesne, « which values quality, community and sustainability. »
Greg Taylor, Steam Whistle co-founding and chief executive, described the agreement as « uniting the number one and number two premium independent craft beer brands in Canada. »