Scotland/UK: 15 year-old craft brewer to build new 400,000 hl brewery

Innis & Gunn, the No. 2 craft brewer in the UK off-trade which was founded in 2003 in Edinburgh, Scotland, has announced to build a new brewery in Scotland’s capital, the first large brewery to be built in the city for 150 years. The exact location within Edinburgh has not yet been revealed.

The new facility will employ 15 people and will have a final capacity of 400,000 hectoliters. In the beginning only 200,000 hectoliters will be used. The brewery will unite several brewing operations under one roof that are currently outsourced. In this context Tennent Caledonian Breweries, one of UK’s oldest brewereries with a heritage that stretches as far back as the 1550s, has announced to end by September 2020 its brewing arrangement with Innis & Gunn which was already running since 2014.

“Building a new brewery will cement our Edinburgh heritage as well as creating a focal point for our beers in the Capital. It provides the brewing, packaging and warehousing capacity we need as we continue to strive to meet the surging demand for our lager,” said Dougal Gunn Sharp, founder and master brewer of Innis & Gunn.

“There will be a taproom and visitor facilities for people who would like to come for a tour and a beer, and we are planning a line-up of events like beer and food festivals,” the founder explained.

In September 2017 Innis & Gunn sold for £15 million (US$ 19.3m at today’s exchange rate) a 27.9% stake to L Catterton, which is according to their own statements the largest consumer-focused private equity firm in the world. “Aside from providing additional capital to accelerate our growth plans, we believe L Catterton will strengthen our business with unparalleled expertise in brand building and a deep understanding of global consumer markets, sharing our vision and supporting our continued expansion and growth,” said Dougal Gunn Sharp at that time, who remained to be the largest shareholder even after the sale.

In April 2017, Scottish fellow brewer BrewDog also sold a minority stake of 23% to San Francisco-based private equity firm TSG Consumer Partners. The deal worth £213m ($265 million) valued BrewDog one and a half years ago at £1bn (US$1.24bn). (, 10.4.2017)

The sale of 27.9% of Innis & Gunn half a year later for £15 million valued UK’s second largest craft brewer at £53.8 (US$69.2m) which is in line with the price received during a crowd funding campaign in November 2016.

Until 2008, the brewery was part-owned by independent, family-owned Scottish distilling company William Grant and Sons, which helped setting up the company as a means to provide the distiller with beer casks from the brewing process for flavoring its own ale cask reserve whisky.

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