The truth about the owner of White Claw

Should you have missed the drink trend that rocketed to stardom in the summer of 2019, hard seltzer is by far the trend of the moment — and it still has plenty of room to grow. Truth be told, regular seltzer was popular for quite some time before hard seltzer made its debut to an audience that was happy to receive it. The bubbly water with an alcoholic spike is currently a $550 million industry with estimates expecting it to hit $2.5 billion by 2021 (via Vox). Sales grew by 200 percent in just one year, and there's no reason to expect the audience to shift their attention anywhere else for now.

At the center of this entire trend — and the material for many memes and comedy sketches at its height — is White Claw. Other brands like Bubly, Fick's, and Budweiser's hard seltzer have come into view, but few have been quite as significant as White Claw and the image the brand built that is now fused into our pop culture consciousness (especially now that the brand has rolled out three brand new flavors). White Claw, which is owned by Mark Anthony Brands (who is also the owner of Mike's Hard Lemonade), along with Truly (owned by Boston Beer Company), combined make up 85 percent of all hard seltzer sales. Now that most brands have at least one seltzer on the market, it's become apparent this is not a trend, but a new market with staying power.

The owner of White Claw hard seltzer

Anthony von Mandl is the real face behind White Claw — and the entire Mark Anthony Brands enterprise for that matter. Mandl started a wine business right out of college in the 1970s through which he sold wine from a small office and out of the back of his car in Canada. Another one of his products is Mike's Hard Lemonade, which was a big hit in Canada and was later moved to the United States (via Forbes).

Now White Claw is just the latest success in a string of "genre-defying alcoholic beverages," according to Bloomberg. Between all of his hits, and even the leaner days that got him to this point, Mandl is now worth some $3.4 billion. Naturally, he's re-invested much of his wealth in his first love, wine, by opening his fifth winery in 2018 along the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia. As the fourth-largest beer company in the United States, Mandl's group is expected to make around $4 billion in revenue in 2020. If there's one thing that's for sure, Mandl, who hosted Prince William and Kate Middleton in 2016 during their Commonwealth tour, isn't about to let the competition slow him down now.