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In this article, we are going to discuss the 12 best alcohol stocks to own according to hedge funds. You can skip our detailed analysis of the global alcohol industry, the rise of RTDs, and the recent shifts in the global alcohol market, and go directly to 5 Best Alcohol Stocks to Own According to Hedge Funds.

The Global Alcohol Industry:

In 2019, the global alcohol consumption, measured in liters of pure alcohol per person of 15 years of age or older, was 5.5 liters, which is a 4.7% relative decrease from 5.7 liters in 2010. According to Allied Market Research, the global alcoholic beverages market size was valued at $1.62 trillion in 2021, and the market is projected to reach $2 trillion by 2031, with a CAGR of 2.2% in the forecast period.

The market is likely to be driven by the increasing global young-adult demographic, coupled with high disposable income and consumer demand for premium/super-premium products. Globally, beer drives the market for alcoholic beverages. Regionally, North America and Asia-Pacific are expected to dominate the market during the forecast period.

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The Rise of RTDs:

Ready-to-drink beverages continue to make headlines as the fastest-growing alcohol beverage category. While malt-based RTDs still retain a 91% share by volume in the American RTD market, spirit-based RTDs grew by 51% in 2021, approximately double the growth of the wine-and malt-based categories. As we mentioned in our article – 25 Most Popular Spirits in the World – the spirits-based RTDs are expected to grow at a CAGR of 33% in volume in the U.S. by 2025.

As consumers continue to look for ‘healthier’ alcohol options, spirit RTDs are responding with spirit-based seltzers with natural flavors and fewer calories. Spirit RTDs like Owl’s Brew’s Tea-based Seltzers claim to be alcoholic drinks that are good for health, benefiting from the ‘health halo’ created by ingredients like vitamins, anti-oxidants, and probiotics.

Recent Shifts in the Global Alcohol Market:

From Japan to the United States, global drinking habits have shifted dramatically in recent years. While it may look like the alcohol industry is set to achieve a multi-trillion dollar mark in the coming decades, recent changes in consumer behavior suggest that the market, as we know it today, may be in danger of running dry.

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As we mentioned in our article – Gen Z’s 25 Favorite Brands of 2023a growing share of the health-conscious Gen Zers are turning away from alcohol. Gen Z drink 20% less per capita than millennials – who, in turn, drink less than Baby Boomers or Gen Xers did at the same age. This has led to the rise of companies like the Athletic Brewing Co., with the non-alcoholic beer maker now becoming one of the Largest Craft Breweries in the US by Volume.

This has also caught the attention of Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV (NYSE:BUD) and the industry giant is now investing $34 million in upgrading some of its Belgian breweries, which will help expand its non-alcoholic beer portfolio. The company has also set itself an ambitious target of having low-and-no alcohol beers account for 20% of its overall sales by 2025.

According to Global Market Insights, the global non-alcoholic beer market was valued at $22 billion in 2022, and is expected to reach $40 billion by 2032, with a CAGR of 5.5% in the forecast period.

With that said, here are the Best Alcohol Stocks According to Hedge Funds.

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Methodology:

To collect data for this article, we scanned Insider Monkey’s database of 910 hedge funds and picked the top 12 companies that operate in the alcohol industry with the highest number of hedge fund investors. Following are the Best Alcohol Stocks to Own According to Hedge Funds:

12. Compañía Cervecerías Unidas S.A. (NYSE:CCU)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 6

Compañía Cervecerías Unidas S.A. (NYSE:CCU) is a beverage company that operates in Chile, Peru, Argentina, Bolivia, Colombia, Paraguay, and Uruguay. The company is one of the biggest brewers in its home country of Chile. The brewing company boasted a revenue of $574.24 million in Q2 2023, with a net income of $118.17 million. Revenue for Q3 is expected to be around $839.9 million.

Shares of Compañía Cervecerías Unidas S.A. (NYSE:CCU) were held by 6 hedge funds at the end of Q2 in the Insider Monkey database, with First Eagle Investment Management holding the largest stake of over 14.9 million shares, valued at $241.97 million.

11. Ambev S.A. (NYSE:ABEV)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 14

Ambev S.A. (NYSE:ABEV), formally Companhia de Bebidas das Américas, is a Brazilian brewing company now merged into Anheuser-Busch InBev. On the 10th of July 2023, BofA upgraded Ambev to ‘Buy’ from ‘Neutral’ with a price target of $3.59, up from $3.37, as the firm rolls over its valuation model to mid-2024. BofA is constructive on margin performance in the next 18 months, driven by lower commodity costs and consistent price/mix, and estimates that 2024 EBITDA margin will be the highest since 2019.

Jean Jereissati, the CEO of Ambev S.A. (NYSE:ABEV), said in the Q2 Earnings Call Transcript:

Shares of Ambev S.A. (NYSE:ABEV) were held by 14 hedge funds at the end of Q2 in the Insider Monkey database, with First Eagle Investment Management holding the largest stake of over 311.64 million shares, valued at $991.02 million.

Ambev S.A. (NYSE:ABEV) is a great alcohol penny stock to own and ranks among the 12 Best Quality Penny Stocks to Buy.

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10. Tilray Brands, Inc. (NASDAQ:TLRY)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 15

Tilray Brands, Inc. (NASDAQ:TLRY) – a craft beer and cannabis company that was among the first to be licensed for medical cannabis in Canada – announced last month that it has agreed to acquire eight beer and beverage brands from Anheuser-Busch InBev for an undisclosed amount.

The deal includes the Shock Top, Blue Point, 10 Barrel, Breckenridge, Redhook, Widmer Brothers, Square Mile Cider, and HiBall Energy brands. Upon satisfaction of customary closing conditions, Tilray Brands, Inc. (NASDAQ:TLRY) will become the fifth-largest craft brewer in the U.S. with a 5% market share.

Berrin Noorata, the chief corporate affairs office at Tilray, said the following in the company’s Q4 Earnings Call Transcript:

Tilray Brands, Inc. (NASDAQ:TLRY) already owns multiple beverage brands and is also among the Biggest Marijuana Companies in the World.

9. MGP Ingredients, Inc. (NASDAQ:MGPI)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 17

If you’re a whiskey lover, you’ve almost certainly tried the offerings of MGP Ingredients, Inc. (NASDAQ:MGPI), knowingly or not. This Indiana distillery has fueled the modern American whiskey boom by supplying distillers like High West, Smooth Ambler, WhistlePig, Angel’s Envy, Bulleit, and many others.

The company has boasted a massive increase in revenue over the last few years. In 2019, MGP Ingredients, Inc. (NASDAQ:MGPI) declared a revenue of $362.75 million, while by 2022, the company’s revenue had jumped up to $782.36 million – an increase of over 115%. The company reported a net income of $32.13 million in Q2 of 2023, up 25.69% from the same quarter of the previous year. MGP Ingredients, Inc. (NASDAQ:MGPI) also announced in June that it had acquired Penelope Bourbon in a $215.8 million deal, including incentives.

SouthernSun SMID Cap Strategy initiated a position in MGP in April this year. The investment management firm made the following comments about the Kansas-based company in its investment letter on August 2nd 2023:

MGP Ingredients, Inc. (NASDAQ:MGPI) is one of the best whiskey stocks to own according to hedge funds.

8. Anheuser-Busch InBev Sa/NV (NYSE:BUD)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 19

Anheuser-Busch InBev Sa/NV (NYSE:BUD) is the Largest Beer Producer by Volume in the World. The company had a global production volume of 595 million hectoliters, or over 25% of the global beer production in 2022. It also boasted a revenue of $57.7 billion in 2022 and a net income of almost $6 billion.

The beer behemoth has been facing some headwinds in the American market after the recent controversy regarding its best-selling brand Bud Light, which resulted in the iconic brand losing its crown as the Top-Selling Beer in America after nearly two decades.

As we mentioned in our article – Top 20 Wine Producing Countries in the World – Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV (NYSE:BUD) shares haven’t gone anywhere in recent years, and it lost around 40% of its value over the last 5 years. It is a highly leveraged company and the rising interest rates aren’t helping the stock either. Nevertheless, billionaire Bill Gates’ portfolio managers decided to initiate a $96 million position in the firm during the second quarter.

Broyhill Asset Management said the following about Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV (NYSE:BUD) in its second quarter 2023 investor letter:

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Anheuser-Busch InBev Sa/NV (NYSE:BUD) ranks among the top 10 alcohol stocks to own in 2023 according to hedge funds.

7. The Duckhorn Portfolio, Inc. (NYSE:NAPA)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 20

Based in California, The Duckhorn Portfolio, Inc. (NYSE:NAPA) makes wines and calls itself a manufacturing company, agricultural company, and marketing company all rolled into one.

With a portfolio of 10 high-quality brands, The Duckhorn Portfolio, Inc. (NYSE:NAPA) is a ‘one-stop luxury wine shop’ and the largest pure-play luxury wine company in the U.S. The company announced gross profit of $50.5 million in its Q3, 2023 Earnings Call Transcript, an increase of $6.5 million or 14.9% compared to the same period in the prior year.

On the 5th of September 2023, BMO Capital initiated coverage of Duckhorn Portfolio with a ‘Market Perform’ rating and a $14 price target. The analyst believes Duckhorn is favorably positioned for long-term growth, but expects share upside to be limited in the medium-term by consumer spending concerns.

The firm also sees risk of potential incremental margin headwinds. The stock will remain pressured until visibility improves given the historical precedence of wine category to macro sensitivity, the analyst tells investors in a research note

Shares of The Duckhorn Portfolio, Inc. (NYSE:NAPA) were held by 20 out of 910 hedge funds in the Insider Monkey database at the end of Q2 2023, with Select Equity Group holding the largest stake of over 6.4 million shares, valued at $83.12 million.

The Duckhorn Portfolio, Inc. (NYSE:NAPA) ranks 7th in our list of best alcohol stocks to own according to hedge funds.

6. The Boston Beer Company, Inc. (NYSE:SAM)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 23

The Boston Beer Company, Inc. (NYSE:SAM) is one of the largest American-owned brewing companies, best known for its line of all-malt beers under the brand name Samuel Adams.

The company’s adjusted EPS of $4.72 in second-quarter 2023 increased 9.5% from the same quarter of 2022. Earnings also beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $3.45. This mainly resulted from higher gross margins and operating income. Net revenues declined 2.1% YoY to $603.3 million, but beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $599 million.

The brewing company’s shipment volume declined 4.5% YoY to 2.3 million barrels in Q2 of 2023, whereas depletions fell 3%. The decline in shipment and depletion resulted from the soft performances of the Truly Hard Seltzer, Angry Orchard, Samuel Adams and Hard Mountain Dew. These were partly negated by growth in the Twisted Tea and Dogfish Head brands.

Longleaf Partners Small-Cap Fund made the following comment about The Boston Beer Company, Inc. (NYSE:SAM) in its Q2 2023 investor letter:

The Boston Beer Company, Inc. (NYSE:SAM) is a good stock to own according to hedge funds.

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Disclosure: None. 12 Best Alcohol Stocks to Own According to Hedge Funds is originally published on Insider Monkey.