Pabst Brewing Company Axes 18% of Workforce

Pabst Brewing Company Light Studios

Pabst Brewing Company might have been named 2016 Large Brewery of the Year, but that doesn’t translate into job security. The Los Angeles-based brewer announced another round of mass layoffs, eliminating 70 positions, or 18% of the total workforce. This is the second time Pabst Brewing Company layoffs have been announced in as many years.

The layoffs came from all areas of the company, including sales, marketing, operations, and administration. In total, the company laid off 50 employees and will leave 20 positions unfilled. The job cuts are expected to help Pabst reduce its costs by 15%.

The brewery is also looking to cut its overall budget, streamline its operations, and ramp up its social media strategy. Going forward, Pabst is looking to shift its focus to area with the greatest potential, including its “New Holland Brewing” (a micro-brewery located in New Holland, Michigan) and “Tsingtao” brands.

“After careful review, we believe it is in our best interest to take a series of strategic actions now, in order to reduce complexity, cut costs, simplify priorities, and reallocate resources, so that Pabst is well positioned for success as we go into 2018,” said Simon Thorpe, CEO of Pabst Brewing Company.


In 2017, Pabst Brewing Company laid off dozens of employees that were hired to manage Small Town Brewery’s “Not Your Father’s Root Beer,” a brand Pabst began distributing nationally. Sales were initially robust, but then waned as the novelty wore off.

“In August 2016, we needed to adjust the size of the company to compensate for the rollercoaster ride that we experienced on Small Town,” Thorpe said. “And then in April 2017, I made some decisions to reshape and refocus the leadership team. This change is about right-sizing the company to make us healthy and agile, and anticipate some of the opportunities and challenges over the three to five years.”

Back in mid-2016, Pabst employed as many as 440 people. After the most recent cuts, that number has dwindled to 310.



Pabst Brewing Company Slashes 18 Percent of Workforce,” Brewbound, January 18, 2018.