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Bell’s Brewery, one of the best-known craft brewing companies in the US, announced Wednesday that it is being sold to a subsidiary of Japanese beverage giant Kirin, the latest example in a trend of craft breweries being bought out by larger companies. .

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Larry Bell, who founded the company in Kalamazoo, Michigan 1983, said he plans to retire and the company’s board thought it would be a good time to sell Bell’s Brewery.

The company said the sale would be finalized in the coming months to Australian-based beverage company Lion, which is a subsidiary of Kirin.

Lion is the same company that bought Colorado-based New Belgium Brewing Company in 2019.

Bell’s is the seventh largest craft brewery in America, according to Brewers Association, and is best known for its Two Hearted Ale, an IPA that contains 7% alcohol by volume.

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