Jim Koch

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Jim Koch
Jim Koch in 2013
Charles James Koch

(1949-05-27) May 27, 1949 (age 74)
EducationHarvard University
Known forCo-founder and chairman of the Boston Beer Company
(m. 1994)

Charles James Koch (/kʊk/ KUUK; born May 27, 1949)[1][2][3] is an American entrepreneur, billionaire, and the co-founder and chairman of the Boston Beer Company, the producers of Samuel Adams beer. Koch is widely considered to be the founding father of the American craft brewing movement.[4]

Early life[edit]

Koch was born in Cincinnati on May 27, 1949,[2] one of four children born to German-American parents Charles and Dorothy Koch (née Kautz).[1] Charles was a fifth-generation brewer.[2] Koch earned a Bachelor of Arts, Juris Doctor, and Master of Business Administration from Harvard University.[5]


He is a former consultant with The Boston Consulting Group. He was formerly an Outward Bound instructor. In 1984, Koch co-founded the Boston Beer Company, the producers of Samuel Adams beer.[6]

Koch took Boston Beer company public in 1995 and owns a 19.5% stake in the company, giving him a net-worth of over $1 billion. In 2023 he was ranked #1905 in Forbes Billionaires 2023.[4]

In 2016, Koch published Quench Your Own Thirst: Business Lessons Learned Over a Beer or Two, in which he discussed how he left his career as a management consultant to start his own brewery using his great-great-grandfather's recipe.[7]

In August 2018, Koch said the corporate tax cut of 2017 helped to play a major role in making Boston Beer Company more competitive in regard to foreign competitors. Koch stated that "When I started Sam Adams, American beer was a joke, and it pissed me off. And now, American brewers make the best beer in the world. And the tax reform was a very big deal for all of us, because 85 percent of the beer made in the United States is owned by foreign companies."[8][9]

Personal life[edit]

Koch's marriage to his first wife, Susan, ended around the time he started the Boston Beer Company.[10][11] He remarried to entrepreneur Cynthia Fisher in 1994.[12][5] He has two children from his first marriage and two from his second.[13] They live in Newton, Massachusetts.[14][15]

Koch is unrelated to Stone Brewing Co. cofounder Greg Koch.[16]

Works cited[edit]

  • Koch, James (2016). Quench Your Own Thirst: Business Lessons Learned Over a Beer or Two. New York: Flatiron Books. ISBN 978-1-250-07050-0. LCCN 2015046334.


  1. ^ a b The Boston Beer Company (June 15, 2011). "Charles Koch, Director of The Boston Beer Company Dies at 88" (Press release). PR Newswire. Retrieved October 8, 2022.
  2. ^ a b c Brooks, Jay R. "The Oxford Companion to Beer definition of Koch, Jim". Craft Beer & Brewing. Retrieved October 8, 2022. Jim Koch was born in Cincinnati in 1949...
  3. ^ Brooks, Jay (May 27, 2022). "Beer Birthday: Jim Koch". Brookston Beer Bulletin. Retrieved October 20, 2022.
  4. ^ a b "Jim Koch". Forbes. Retrieved August 2, 2021.
  5. ^ a b "Story Details - Alumni - Harvard Business School". May 11, 2017.
  6. ^ "People: Boston Beer Company Inc (SAM)". Reuters. Retrieved May 13, 2017.
  8. ^ "Remarks by President Trump Before Dinner with Business Leaders". whitehouse.gov. August 8, 2018. Retrieved August 16, 2018 – via National Archives.
  9. ^ Andersen, Travis; Chesto, Jon (August 9, 2018). "Boston Beer boss tells Trump that tax cut helps his company 'kick ass'". The Boston Globe. Retrieved August 9, 2018.
  10. ^ Koch 2016, p. 102: "My wife Susan and I split up as I was launching the company."
  11. ^ Gerber, Scott (October 21, 2015). "The Unlikely Sales Incentive That Launched Sam Adams Beer". Inc.com.
  12. ^ Koch 2016, p. 118: "My wife Cynthia (whom I had married in 1994 and was an entrepreneur herself)..."
  13. ^ "CNN.com - Career - Samuel Adams brewer Jim Koch: Beer career - March 16, 2001". www.cnn.com.
  14. ^ "Newton resident Jim Koch thanks Trump for lowering taxes | Village 14". August 8, 2018. Archived from the original on November 20, 2020. Retrieved July 16, 2019.
  15. ^ Williams, DeMarco. "Samuel Adams Founder Jim Koch Talks Beer And Boston". Forbes.
  16. ^ "Greg Koch". RateBeer. February 22, 2002. Retrieved October 26, 2017.