Mahou San Miguel, the Spanish brewer, is capitalising on the growth of the US craft brewing market by taking a 30% stake in Founders.

In a statement yesterday, the Madrid-based brewer said the deal will also give Michigan-based Founders global distribution through its international distribution network. The US firm, which was established in 1997, is currently the US's 26th largest craft brewer by volume, with its beer sold in 32 states.

Financial terms of the deal, which remains subject to final approval from the US authorities, were not disclosed.

Javier López del Hierro, Mahou San Miguel's president, said: "We see our investment in Founders as a great source of learning, innovation and transformation for Mahou San Miguel in the hugely attractive and innovative market that the US represents, which is indeed the beer market of more value worldwide.” 

In July, Founders were reported to be planning to spend US$25m on doubling its capacity

Mike Stevens, the craft brewer's co-founder & CEO, said: “We knew that taking on a partner was the necessary, responsible thing to do for the future of Founders, because it would afford us new opportunities for growth as well as ensure our legacy for years to come.

“We spent a long time determining who would be the best partner to help us grow Founders while staying true to our beers and our culture. We are honoured to be entering into a partnership with a brewer that commands so much respect and with such a focus on brewing excellence.”

Mahou San Miguel has been selling its own beers in the US since 2011 and distributes them in around 50 countries, including the UK, Germany, Italy, Nordic countries, Chile, Guinea, Cameroon, China and India.

It is the second major European brewer to acquire an interest in a US craft brewer after Belgium's Duvel Moortgat took a majority stake in Missouri's Boulevard Brewing Co last year.