Fife brewery to expand after smashing crowdfunding target

A Fife brewery is expanding after exceeding its crowdfunding target in less than a week.

The brewer is set to open its fifth craft beer bar, in Dundee later this year. Picture: contributed.
The brewer is set to open its fifth craft beer bar, in Dundee later this year. Picture: contributed.

St Andrews Brewing Co. surpassed its £400,000 target in just five days, with 346 investors contributing to the total on the company’s Crowdcube site.

The brewer is continuing to accept investment and will use the funds to increase beer production to meet export demand and supply its growing estate of bars, with a new venue opening later this year.

Owner Tim Butler said: “It’s great to see such a strong start to our crowdfunding campaign. We have a very ambitious growth curve and would love to reach £600,000.

“The equity raised will help to propel the company, onto a UK-wide stage and globally from next year onwards.”

The company’s crowdfunding page sets out a vision to establish a “brand worldwide as a creator of brilliant beers and the perfect places to enjoy them”.

In addition to supplying clients, the brewer now has four venues of its own, at North Street and South Street in St Andrews, and Potterow and Broughton Street Lane in Edinburgh.

Its fifth bar is scheduled to open at Dundee’s Caird Hall in November, close to the city’s £1 billion waterfront redevelopment.

Butler believed the new establishment will be ideally placed to add to the city’s character. He said: “We’re aiming to make Dundee a flagship destination for the best of Scottish beer, food and hospitality. It’s a flourishing city with world-class technology and research facilities. And with the new V&A museum and waterfront redevelopment close by, we’re ideally positioned to contribute to the renewed vibrancy of the area.”

The company today unveiled proposed designs for the 8,000 square foot Dundee bar, which will include an atrium seating area, cocktail bar and snug area.

The brewer’s own bars currently consume 25 per cent of the business’s beer production, with the remainder distributed to venues across Scotland and retailed at supermarkets including Sainsbury’s, Asda, Lidl and Aldi.

The company’s crowdfunding investment is earmarked to fund new equipment capable of expanding the company’s offering and increasing its beer production five-fold to one million pints in 2019.

Butler said: “Our new brewing kit is not just about expansion and the ability to brew more beer. It will allow us to brew lagers for the first time, as well as give us far greater control over the production process which will improve consistency, efficiency and quality, allowing us to release sours, saisons, double IPAs and all types of hop-forward beers.

“We’re ready to take advantage of the world’s growing love affair with craft beer.”

Founded in 2012, the company moved from its small Fife Council unit to its current home in central St Andrews in 2014 and now employs 70 people.

Its success is part of the so-called craft beer revolution. The number of UK breweries has surpassed 2,000 for the first time since the 1930s, according to figures from accountancy firm UHY Hacker Young, and craft beer has become a significant export, worth approximately £18 million to the economy.