UK: Hop Stuff Brewery screws investors with asset sale to Molson Coors

Hop Stuff Brewery, a London/UK based brewery which opened in 2013 and sourced over three rounds GBP 1.5 million (USD 1.8m) from 1,300 investors, was sold in an asset deal to Molson Coors Brewing. The brewery “has been experiencing financial difficulties in the recent months. Unfortunately, due to the cash position of the business weighing heavily on the business, Hop Stuff Brewery Limited and each of its subsidiaries entered into administration on Friday 12th July,” Hop Stuff’s founder James Yeomans said last Friday in an open letter to “investors, friends and ambassadors”.

“I’m pleased to say that we were able to secure an asset sale to Molson Coors Brewing Company as part of a pre-packaged administration process, which includes our brewery, brand and taprooms and the transfer of all staff to Molson Coors,” the letter continues. “Due to our financial position, this was the best possible option for our people and the future of our beers, or we faced the whole business going into liquidation. Unfortunately, a full sale of the shareholding of the Company was commercially unviable and so I truly regret to have to confirm that there will be no returns to investors.”

The current case is the most recent and one of the most prominent examples that demonstrate the associated risk to crowd funding. “I am so sorry. I wanted so much to turn the passion you have for Hop Stuff Brewery into a financial win for you and I am absolutely gutted that hasn’t happened,”Yeomans admitted.

“With [Molson Coors’] support and guidance, we are going to be able to start brewing again and be able to supply our customers in London,” the founder said.

“I would completely understand if you wanted to wash your hands of us, but I very much hope that you don’t. If you’d like to remain a part of our journey, together with Molson Coors, we will be launching a Hop Stuff Collective for original investors who would like to stay involved. Members of the Collective will receive exclusive access to key events throughout the year, a product subscription, discounts and be invited to be part of New Product Development through quarterly tastings and innovation sessions at the brewery.”

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