Longtime Anheuser-Busch Executive Takes Over As CEO Of San Diego's Green Flash Brewing Company

May 31, 2018

San Diego's Green Flash Brewing Company, which we recently announced was in the midst of a bit of a downward spiral, has announced the appointment of new CEO Michael Taylor, a longtime executive for Anheuser-Busch Companies.

Green Flash Brewing Company has had a tough 2018. Already this year, the company laid off nearly a quarter of its workforce, ceased distribution in 32 states, shut down their 16-month-old East Coast brewery operations, shuttered their Poway-based Cellar 3 Barrel Aged Brewery and tasting room, and announced that the company was forced to sell after a foreclosure. The new parent company, WC IPA Parent LLC, had already included a member that was the former Senior Director of Finance and Admin of the Craft Division of Anheuser-Busch InBev. The appointment of another longtime InBev employee, Michael Taylor, as CEO will certainly result in more speculation that this is a tactical takeover of a San Diego craft brewery by the brewing behemoth.

"I’m thrilled to lead the Green Flash and Alpine teams as we enter new chapters as vibrant members of the San Diego craft beer community," said Taylor. "This is an exciting time for Green Flash and Alpine, and we will build upon what has made our breweries award-winning - our hard-working, creative employees and a shared vision to pioneer progressive, unique, and high-quality craft beer and experiences."

With more than a decade of experience in the beer and beverage industry, Taylor will reportedly focus on strengthening the Green Flash and Alpine brands, culture and regional footprint, while guiding the long-term strategic growth of the businesses. Prior to joining Green Flash, Taylor worked at Anheuser-Busch Companies where he served in various senior management positions during his 14-year tenure with the company. Most recently, he was vice president of non-alcohol, leading all commercial and business operations for the Hiball Energy and Alta Palla brands. Prior to that, he was vice president of Mergers & Acquisitions, responsible for leading all M&A and business-development strategies and activities for the U.S. and Canada, including positioning several well-known In-Bev-acquired craft breweries for growth and sustainable success. 

In addition to his involvement in the beer industry with Anheuser-Busch, Taylor has strong ties within the alcohol industry, recently serving as a board member of Craft Brew Alliance Inc. and an advisory board member of the wine investment fund, Bacchus Capital Management. A chartered financial analyst (CFA), Taylor earned both his MBA and BSBA degrees in finance and organizational management from the University of Missouri, St. Louis.

Green Flash’s now-controversial founder, Mike Hinkley, is allegedly staying on to "continue to play an active role on the leadership team reporting to Taylor and serving on the company’s board of managers."

We continue to speculate that Anheuser-Busch has more to do with the recent purchase of Green Flash than the breweries current owners are letting on. The ownership company of Green Flash, WC IPA LLC, includes member Joshua Yelsey, who was the former Senior Director of Finance and Admin of the Craft Division of Anheuser-Busch InBev. New CEO Taylor's LinkedIn page states that he presently works in the employ of Green Flash (see below)

For more information, visit greenflashbrew.com.