AB InBev now owns 100 percent of ratings review website RateBeer.com.
ZX Ventures, which is Anheuser-Busch InBev’s “tech-friendly growth division,” now owns the remaining ownership of the website, 19 months after it was announced the company purchased a minority stake in October 2016. According to a post on the forum, the purchase will give the website access to greater resources, which will allow it to “continue modernizing the site, and expand into new areas, like an affiliate marketplace in Australia.”
“After ZX Ventures took a minority investment in RateBeer, we were able to make improvements to infrastructure, put out an in-house mobile app, and modernize key pages that as the only full-time employee with help from some amazing admins and volunteer coders, I was never able to tackle,” said Joe Tucker, the site’s executive director, on a post on RateBeer’s website. “It’s with this in mind – my great respect for what we’ve built – that I’ll remain working on the project in the same role, as global community manager, helping guide the site into even better future days.”
While there is no confirmation of changes to any other positions within RateBeer.com—including the volunteer administrators who monitor the website—the post does say that the purchase “won’t impact the day-to-day for anyone using on the site.”
Three days after the original minority stake purchase announcement was made in June 2017, Dogfish Head Brewery owner Sam Calagione posted a letter on the brewery’s website, calling the investment a “direct violation of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) Code of Ethics and a blatant conflict of interest.” In addition, Calagione called on RateBeer users to “shift the sharing of your beer opinions and reviews to another platform that remains loyal to the principles of journalistic integrity.”
Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.