India: New 400,000 hl brewery planned for Bira 91

B9 Beverages Pvt., the India’s fourth largest brewer and the owner of Indian craft-beer brand Bira 91, is planning to open a 400,000 hectoliters in Madhya Pradesh before the end of the year. The new plant will be Bira’s fifth brewery in India and its second in Madhya Pradesh.

B9 Beverage was founded by Indian entrepreneur Ankur Jain in early 2015. Its main product, Bira 91, which is known for its cartoon punk monkey mascot, was initially brewed in Belgium and exported to India before production was transferred to India. The company has currently a production capacity of 2 million hectoliters which makes up for a 5-10% share of the beer market in cities such as New Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru.  The overall beer market share in India amounts to 5%, and over 20% share in the premium beer category in India, according to the company’s own statements. The company has annual sales of USD 170 million in a market worth about USD 7.8 billion in 2019. This still gives enough potential to growth if compared to beer sales of about USD 105.4 billion market in the United States.

The success of the startup has attracted investors like Kirin Holdings of Japan which invested USD 30 million in January 2021 and received in turn a minority share of less than 10 percent in the New Delhi-based brewer. (, 5.1.2021)

Other investors include Sequoia Capital, an American venture capital firm that mainly focuses on the technology industry and backs companies that now control USD 3.3 trillion of combined stock market value, equivalent to 22 percent of Nasdaq. In total, B9 has secured so far USD 50 million and is also preparing for its last and largest round of private fund raising set to conclude in 2021. Thereafter, the company plans to go public.

The new brewery in Madhya Pradesh will have a capacity of 400,000 hectoliters a year that can be expanded to 1 million hectoliters.

“Competition is increasing for sure -- I still think it’s very early, early stages,” Jain said. “We’re nowhere near saturation yet.

“Consumers are looking for more flavor,” the founder added. “I don’t think there will be any slow down.”

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