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Early indications

Industry publications such as Beer Business Daily and data from NielsenIQ and Bump Williams Consulting suggested that sales of Bud Light were plummeting as the public backlash continued. Some wholesalers also confirmed the reports of sales declining.

However, AB InBev’s management was quick to point out that these declines represented just a fraction of the company’s overall sales. “Bud Light volume decline in the U.S. over the first three weeks of April, as publicly reported, would represent around 1% of our overall global volumes for that period,” Doukeris confirmed during the earnings call. “We believe we have the experience, the resources, and the partners to manage this. And our full-year EBITDA growth outlook is unchanged.”

That’s good news for investors.

Investors might also be encouraged by the fact that other multinational brands have brushed off similar controversies in the past. Disney shares are up 13% year-to-date and the company has even announced a Pride event at its resort in June, despite the backlash against the company’s stance on Florida’s so-called ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill.

Meanwhile, Nike shares are up nearly 7% year-to-date despite its own collaboration with Dylan Mulvaney. Nike’s partnership with the controversial star continues despite the backlash.

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AB InBev shares

Anheuser-Busch InBev stock closed up 3.5% on Thursday after the earnings call. Year-to-date, the stock is up about 9%, pretty much in line with the S&P 500 over the same period.

The company’s stock performance, full-year guidance and sales volume all indicate that the ongoing boycott may have minimal impact on the company’s long-term prospects. Investors with a broad time horizon may probably want to overlook the temporary disruption in public relations.

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About the Author

Vishesh Raisinghani

Vishesh Raisinghani

Freelance Writer

Vishesh Raisinghani is a freelance contributor at MoneyWise. He has been writing about financial markets and economics since 2014 - having covered family offices, private equity, real estate, cryptocurrencies, and tech stocks over that period. His work has appeared in Seeking Alpha, Motley Fool Canada, Motley Fool UK, Mergers & Acquisitions, National Post, Financial Post, and Yahoo Canada.

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