Not a huge issue, and certainly not with ABI. Actual craft breweries have been bought solely by the two big local players (who themselves are owned by global conglomerates), along with both trying to create their own faux-craft brands. They were bought to get craft taps into Lion / DB tied bars, as the faux-craft they set up wasn’t fooling anybody. Tuatara (who are exported all over) are owned by DB, who are owned by Heineken. Panhead and Emerson’s are owned by Lion, who I think are owned by Asahi. Only outrage was about Emerson’s, partly because they were first, and partly because they have a long and illustrious history as an independent brewery in a small city with a lot of local pride. The outrage was less for the latter two, because the Emerson’s deal has actually been pretty good. The same people are making the same beers but they’ve got a bunch more capital to do so. They’ve had a big new brewery paid for, increasing their production by orders of magnitude, and with that extra production seem to have dramatically increased the number of seasonal specials and experimental one offs. There’s also stories of them using their new money to help small breweries. There is of course a minority who have significant issues with these breweries solely from an independence matters perspective.
TLDR: Yes, NZ has the same sort of problem, but with local macros who don’t seem to have the same evil in them.
Getting back to the Australia thing, I’ve never particularly enjoyed Pirate Life anyway, never understood the hype, so I’ll just carry on trying them occasionally when there’s nothing else I want. I was sad about 4 Pines, because I’ve enjoyed the few beers from them I’ve had. Feral do make fantastic beers, but with their sale I’ll wait and see. Coca-Cola certainly have a chequered past in the soft drinks industry, but I don’t know what they bring to the beer industry. If it’s increased production and funds for Feral to produce the same beers with more marketing opportunities (perhaps some exports to nearby countries…) I don’t think it’s the end of the world.
As for Boatrocker making expensive beers. If they want to send those 6 $30 beers to NZ I will buy all of them. Ramjet is the best straight barrel aged stout I’ve ever drunk.