The Boston Beer Co. Inc., Boston, reported second quarter 2021 net revenue of $602.8 million, an increase of $150.7 million or 33.3%, from the same period last year.

Net income for the second quarter was $59.2 million, a decrease of $0.9 million or 1.6% from the same period last year. Earnings per diluted share were $4.75, a decrease of $0.13 per diluted share, or 2.7% from the second quarter of 2020.  This decrease was primarily due to increases in operating expenses, lower gross margins, and a higher tax rate, partially offset by increased revenue driven by shipment growth of 27.4%.

Net revenue for the 26-week period, which ended June 26, was $1.15 billion, an increase of $365.2 million, or 46.7%, from the comparable 26-week period in 2020. Earnings per diluted share for the 26-week period ended June 26, 2021, were $10.01, an increase of $3.64 per diluted share or 57.2% from the comparable 26-week period in 2020.

In the second quarter and the 26-week period, which ended June 26, the company recorded a tax benefit of $0.03 per diluted share and $0.72 per diluted share, respectively, resulting from the Accounting Standard "Employee Share-Based Payment Accounting" ("ASU 2016-09").

The following are highlights of this release:

  • Depletions increased 24% and 33% from the 13-and 26-week comparable periods in the prior year.
  • Shipments increased 27.4% and 41.3% from the 13- and 26-week comparable periods in the prior year.
  • Full-year depletion and shipment growth is now estimated at between 25% and 40%, a decrease from the previously reported estimate of between 40% and 50%.
  • Gross margin was 45.7% for the second quarter, a decrease from 46.4% in the comparable 13-week period in 2020, and 45.8% for the 26-week period ending June 26, 2021, a slight increase from 45.7% in the comparable 26-week period in 2020. The company's full-year gross margin target remains between 45% and 47%.
  • Advertising, promotional and selling expense increased by $61.3 million, or 61.1%, in the second quarter over the comparable period in 2020 and increased $104.3 million, or 52.6%, from the comparable 26-week period in 2020.
  • Based on current spending and investment plans, full-year 2021 Non-GAAP earnings per diluted share1, which excludes the impact of ASU 2016-09, is now estimated at between $18.00 and $22.00 a decrease from the previously reported estimate of between $22 and $26.

Jim Koch, Chairman and Founder of the company, stated: “During the second quarter we saw significant growth in the on-premise channel and re-opened all our retail locations as most COVID-19 restrictions have been lifted. However, our 24% depletions growth for the second quarter decelerated from our first quarter growth of 48% and was below our expectations, as the hard seltzer category and overall beer industry were softer than we had anticipated. Hard seltzer category growth was negatively impacted by several developments: (1) slowing growth in household penetration as the market matures and there is less new trial, (2) a gradual transition of volume to the on-premise channel as hard seltzer becomes a more regular option in that channel, (3) new hard seltzer brands at retail that resulted in a proliferation of choices and consumer confusion, and (4) a challenging comparative period of significant pantry loading related to On-Premise restrictions in the second quarter of 2020.

“We are encouraged that four of our five major brands grew in the second quarter and we continue to expand our market share,” he continued. “In measured off-premise channels in the first half of this year, where our brand portfolio represents 4% of the total beer industry volume, we've delivered over 45% of the industry volume growth, the highest of all brewers. We are thankful to our outstanding coworkers, distributors and retailers for their continued focus and diligence to continue to operate and help grow our business and achieve our thirteenth consecutive quarter of double-digit volume growth. We will continue to invest behind all our brands, with a particular emphasis on fueling the momentum behind Truly and Twisted Tea. We recently announced plans to develop new innovative beverages with Beam Suntory that we are planning to launch in early 2022. We believe these new beverages will further demonstrate our ability to innovate and grow our business as drinker preferences evolve. We remain highly positive about the future growth of our brands and that our diversified brand portfolio continues to fuel double-digit growth.”

Dave Burwick, the company's president and CEO also noted: “Our depletions growth in the second quarter was a result of increases in our Truly Hard Seltzer, Twisted Tea, Samuel Adams and Dogfish Head brands that were only partially offset by decreases in our Angry Orchard brand. Twisted Tea continues to generate double-digit volume growth rates and is the fastest growing flavored malt beverage brand family in measured Off-Premise channels during the first half of this year. Early in 2021, we launched Truly Iced Tea Hard Seltzer and during the second quarter we launched Truly Punch Hard Seltzer. Similar to Truly Lemonade Hard Seltzer, these new products deliver against drinkers' interest in bolder flavor profiles and demonstrate Truly's distinctiveness and innovation leadership within the hard seltzer category. In measured Off-Premise channels, Truly Iced Tea is the number one innovation in the overall beer industry over the first half of this year and Truly Punch is the number two innovation over the past four weeks. The overall Truly brand growth rate improved to 2.7 times the hard seltzer category growth rate in the latest 13 weeks, resulting in a four-point share gain and closing the share gap to the number one brand to single digits. We are excited about our new Truly advertising campaign No One Is Just One Flavor featuring Grammy-award winner and pop icon Dua Lipa and showcasing Truly's superior variety of flavors and the colorful and adventurous nature of Truly drinkers. Based on the brand's innovation leadership, strong brand building and growing cultural relevance, we believe Truly is well positioned to continue to grow share.

“We overestimated the growth of the hard seltzer category in the second quarter and the demand for Truly, which negatively impacted our volume and earnings for the quarter and our estimates for the remainder of the year,” he continued. “We increased our production of Truly to meet our summer peak and have had lower than anticipated demand for certain Truly brand styles which has resulted in higher than planned inventory levels at our breweries and increased supply chain costs and complexity. At the same time, we have been experiencing out of stocks on certain of our can products, most significantly on our Twisted Tea brand family. We expect wholesaler inventories of Twisted Tea to remain tight for the rest of the summer. Our outlook for the hard seltzer category in the second half of 2021 is uncertain and we have planned our capacity and spending based upon several volume scenarios. We will continue to manage our capacity requirements through a combination of internal capacity increases and higher usage of third-party breweries. We continue to work hard on our comprehensive program to transform our supply chain with the goal of making our integrated supply chain more efficient, reduce costs, increase our flexibility to better react to mix changes, and allow us to scale up more efficiently. While we are in a very competitive business, we are confident in the continued growth of our current brand portfolio and innovations and we remain prepared to forsake short-term earnings as we invest to sustain long-term profitable growth.”