Hawaii's Maui Brewing Company Now Set To Purchase San Diego's Modern Times Beer For $15.3 Million

July 28, 2022

The sale of Modern Times Beer to Anaheim's Brewery X has fallen through, and the 9 year-old San Diego craft brewery is now being purchased by Hawaii-based Maui Brewing Company.

In April 2022, less than two months after announcing the closure of half its locations, San Diego-based Modern Times Beer announced that the company's lender had commenced litigation that would inevitably lead to a court-ordered sale of the craft brewery. This past June 17 at an auction of qualified bidders, Anaheim-based, 3-year-old Brewery X was the winning bidder for $20 million, more than twice the $7.62 million bid made by Maui Brewing.

In early July, Modern Times Beer CEO Jennifer Briggs announced that Brewery X "elected not to complete the sale process", so the court-approved backup bidder Maui Brewing Company is moving forward with the purchase. Maui Brewing will acquire Modern Times for $15.3 million, twice as much as their initial bid of $7.62 million. The combined breweries project to produce 125,000 bbls in 2022, which will make the entity the country’s 21st largest craft brewery according to the Brewers Association.

"We are now even more excited in the future of Modern Times," commented Maui Brewing Company CEO and co-founder Garrett Marrero. "The delays were painful for all; however, it was important that we waited until we had made concrete decisions to avoid any further emotional whiplash for our collective teams. We are beyond stoked to be welcoming Modern Times into the Maui ‘Ohana and work together to achieve our fullest potential."

The team at Modern Times Beer continued on an aggressive growth path since founder Jacob McKean started the company in San Diego's Point Loma in 2013. In addition to being California's first employee-owned brewery, the craft brewery expanded greatly in its nine year tenure, including opening a North Park tasting room dubbed the Flavordome, a downtown Los Angeles restaurant and tasting room named The Dankness Dojo, a tasting room and restaurant in Encinitas named 'The Far West Lounge', a full brewery operation in Portland, Oregon named 'The Belmont Fermentorium', the Invigatorium coffee shop in San Diego's East Village in partnership with Consortium Holdings, the Modern Times Academy of Recreational Sciences tasting room and restaurant in Santa Barbara, The House of Perpetual Refreshment in Oakland, and a 33,000 square-foot Leisuretown project in Anaheim, CA. All of this is in addition to operating the company's original brewery and coffee shop in Point Loma, which was in the process of being expanded into neighboring buildings to add a restaurant before COVID-19 took the world by storm.

In spring 2021, the founder of San Diego's Modern Times Beer Jacob McKean issued a public apology and announced he resigned as CEO following continued revelations detailing allegations of harassment and discrimination against members of the craft beer industry, including many directly implicating Modern Times. The following January 2022, Modern Times announced its new CEO, Jennifer Briggs, formerly of New Belgium Brewing. Briggs had been trying to sell the company to cover debts, but the court-appointed receivership took control of the sale away from the company and its executives this past spring.

There is no word on what Maui Brewing Company will do with Modern Times Beer's still-open San Diego properties, including the main brewery in Point Loma, the tasting room in North Park and the tasting room restaurant in Encinitas. The Modern Times Beer sale to Maui Brewing Company is anticipated to close this October 2022.