If INBEV wanted HOOK to be making more money and selling more, they would be doing it. However, for some reason this isn't the case and there are always new excuses as to why it will be next year. INBEV simply has no desire for HOOK to do anything but plug a gap in their book. If HOOK's increasing sales take away from the leader that has 50% of the market, INBEV loses. That is why we see this constant treading water, INBEV will never let HOOK grow like an independent company has the potential to.
To get the revision that forces CBA to keep New Hampshire open and eliminate the possibility of HOOK telling them to kiss off and going with different distributors in the West. INBEV likes to control things.
Hook is just an Insurance policy. If the economy tanks and people gravitate to cheap beers instead of craft beer then they will cut hook of line. If craft takes off then they buy them out cheaply, if hook decides to fight cheap buyout then they cut distribtuion agreement. Right now nothing is clear about the econmy that is why no buyout. We could see a double dip or hook fizzles like jones soda. INbev on the fence watching with humor.
Trader, I agree about the insurance policy, but not against cheap beer. Craft is here to stay as SAM's growth numbers indicate in a bad economy. You may be right that INBEV is just testing to see if HOOK is worth buying or see if it is another Jones.