Heineken invests in Brixton Brewery
The trend for multinational brewers investing in their small, craft counterparts continues apace as Heineken has taken a minority stake in Brixton Brewery.
Brixton said the partnership with Heineken would allow it to build a new site and increase capacity by 500% in the next few months.
It follows on from AB-Inbev acquiring Camden Town Brewery, Carlsberg investing in London Fields Brewery and SAB Miller snapping up Meantime, which is now part of Asahi.
The Brixton team said in a statement: “We know we want to grow, and to be at the forefront of the brewing industry, and of our family business. We want to be in the brewery every day, working alongside our extraordinary, hilarious, creative and talented team. We also know we want to remain in Brixton, this fantastically eclectic place that has inspired and nurtured us, and given us the names and characters of many of our popular beers.
“These days industrial space in central London is the rarest of commodities. To expand, most businesses are forced to move production to the outskirts. For us this was unthinkable and having missed out on a unit up Brixton Hill earlier in the year, we couldn’t believe our luck when we found the perfect, albeit much larger space, just 600 metres from our current brewery.
“It could take our brewing capacity from 12,000 pints a week to 60,000 and enable greater control over the process. It could help us keep brewing our consistently top quality core beers, while we experiment and innovate through our Ltd Edn range in our original brewery and tap room. It could mean more jobs and opportunities. And it was available.
“To realise this unique and ambitious chance to grow in our home we needed serious investment. It was with pretty much perfect timing that we were contacted by Heineken UK. They had noticed us, liked what we were doing and wanted to see if we could work together somehow.
“We invited some of the Heineken team for a brew day and were impressed by their knowledge, passion and insight. We got to know them slowly, felt that we had common ground, and built a relationship of mutual trust and respect. We were delighted that they believed in our vision too.
“They wanted to support us through investment in the new brewery, and eventually, through helping us get our beers out there to be enjoyed by more people. We are hugely proud of our success story, and see this partnership as the ideal way to keep the important things – the beer character, Brixton and our team – the same, while growing and evolving.”
Heineken, which supplies UK retailers with the likes of Kronenbourg 1664, Strongbow, Desperados and Bulmers alongside its eponymous Dutch lager, said it was honoured to partner with Brixton Brewery and help expand its distribution.