FORBES – Shares of Bud Light’s parent company are now down more than 20% in the two months since the beer sent personalized memorabilia to social media influencer Dylan Mulvaney, a seemingly innocuous marketing partnership that’s cost the company billions amid right-wing backlash.
Anheuser-Busch InBev’s stock slipped 2% early Wednesday, continuing its dramatic slide against broader market gains and tanking to a new eight-month low of about $53.
Shares of the multinational beer giant have fallen 20% since March 31, the day before Mulvaney shared a video on TikTok showcasing the personalized cans of Bud Light sent to her by the company, commemorating the anniversary of her coming out as transgender.
That set forth a firestorm of controversy among mostly right-wing celebrities, politicians and beer drinkers, including former President Donald Trump, country music singer Kid Rock and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.).
Anheuser-Busch sales slipped by 10% or more over each of the last four weeks compared to the same week last year, according to NielsenIQ data cited Tuesday by Goldman Sachs.
Meanwhile, sales for rival Molson Coors are up more than 15% on an annual basis, and shares of the Coors Light and Miller Light parent have gained 19% over the last two months.
BIG NUMBER: $26 billion. That’s how much market capitalization Anheuser-Busch has lost over the last two months.
Despite the company’s stock slide, Wall Street remains fairly bullish on Anheuser-Busch; the nearly three dozen analysts surveyed by FactSet have an average price target of about $67 for the stock, implying roughly 25% upside and projecting it to hit its pre-controversy level.
In a Wednesday note to clients, Bernstein analysts led by Nadine Sarwat said Bud Light’s market share losses appear to be “stabilizing,” maintaining their $68 price target while noting the situation has unexpectedly “officially become a microcosm of U.S. politics … ”