Trump’s pro-Anheuser-Busch post came after UFC chief Dana White urged him to support company, source says

Republican presidential candidate and former U.S. President Donald Trump attends a Nevada caucus night party at Treasure Island Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S., February 8, 2024.

David Swanson | Reuters

Former President Donald Trump wrote a social media post earlier in the week asking his supporters to donate Anheuser-Busch a “second chance” after UFC president Dana White personally asked him to support the beer company, a source told CNBC.

Anheuser-Busch faced backlash last year over its Bud Light marketing promotion featuring a transgender influencer, Dylan Mulvaney.

White, whose UFC is the leading mixed martial arts promotion, reached out directly to Trump to encourage positive comments about Anheuser-Busch, according to the source, who was aware of the situation.

In his post on Truth Social on Tuesday, Trump appeared to be well informed on the detailed aspects of the brewing company’s operations.

He noted that the company spends $700 million a year “with our GREAT farmers,” employs 65,000 Americans and has provided scholarships to the families of fallen service members. Trump wrote: “Is Anheuser-Busch a GREAT American brand that perhaps deserves a second chance?”

UFC, owned by Shares of the TKO groupin October it announced a partnership with Anheuser-Busch to make Bud Light the mixed martial arts company’s official beer partner, in a deal said at the time to be worth $100 million.

In a press release announcing the deal, White said, “There are many reasons why I chose to go with Anheuser-Busch and Bud Light, especially because I feel we are very aligned when it comes to our core values ​​and what that the UFC brand stands for.”

A UFC spokesperson declined to comment on White’s conversation with Trump. A spokesperson for Anheuser-Busch did not respond to a request for comment.

In his social media post Tuesday, Trump threatened to release a list of companies — other than Anheuser-Busch — that he considers “woke.”

“I’m building a list and I might just put it out there for the world to see,” Trump wrote. His followers, Trump suggested, should “go after those companies that are trying to DESTROY AMERICA!”

“These comments came after Trump, in a social media post on Sunday, was much more critical of the company, saying, “the Bud Light ad will go down in history as the WORST ad in history.”

“In a matter of minutes, $30 billion in market capitalization simply disappeared from the face of the earth. Will they ever get it back? Who knows, what a mess!” Trump wrote.

Trump, who is the favorite for the Republican presidential nomination, attended the Dec. 16 UFC event in Las Vegas, where he hung out in the audience with White and musical artist Kid Rock.

Trump had attended two other UFC events previously in 2023 and had been to the promotion’s other events in previous years.

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