Scots brewer Innis & Gunn pumps £100k into business amid post-lockdown surge

Brewer Innis & Gunn has invested more than £100,000 in its Perth brewery and bars after cheering strong trading since the re-opening of much of the hospitality sector.

The firm, which was founded in 2003 and has established a reputation for its whisky cask matured ales, pointed to a strong second quarter with a 20-fold increase in new draught rollouts at target outlets across Scotland and nine new national listings with major retailers.

Since the restricted re-opening of the on-trade sector north of the Border, demand for Innis & Gunn beers is said to have been high, with the brewer already tracking 42 per cent ahead of budget.

The firm’s new partnership with Tennent’s owner C&C Group is also signalling success with a sharp increase in new draught installs of Innis & Gunn’s lager, Session IPA and Ossian Smoothflow at key accounts across Scotland. Venues that will now pour the brewer’s products include the Atholl Arms Hotel in Dunkeld, Kingsmill & Ness Walk in Inverness and Dundee’s The Caird.

Innis & Gunn founder Dougal Gunn Sharp: 'We have continued to innovate and invest in the business over the last year and it is really paying off'

Tables at the firm’s four Brewery Taproom sites across Dundee, Edinburgh and Glasgow have been fully booked since re-opening, with demand for tables “in their thousands”.

Following major investment in 2019, a further £32,000 has been invested in back-of-house systems ahead of re-opening post-lockdown this year.

A new bespoke ordering app has been created which allows users to collect loyalty points, redeemable in-bar against future purchases. This is said to have proven popular, with a 50 per cent-plus uptake from customers since re-opening.

The firm, which owns the Inveralmond brewery in Perth but is also looking to build a facility in Edinburgh, pointed to continued success in the off-trade sector, where the brand is growing 31 per cent, year on year, with nine new national listings secured across Scottish Tesco, Co-op, Asda and Sainsbury’s stores.

The business is investing some £80,000 in new equipment at the Perth brewery to support the production of increased volumes and demand for 440ml can formats.

Founder Dougal Gunn Sharp said: “The demand and momentum for Innis & Gunn continues to grow, right across the on and off-trade. We have continued to innovate and invest in the business over the last year and it is really paying off.

“The re-opening of the Scottish on-trade was eagerly awaited and we have undoubtedly come back with a bang, performing 42 per cent ahead of budget.

“The significant number of new draught installs of Innis & Gunn beers, as a result of our partnership with C&C will further support our drinkers as they return to the trade for their much-longed for pints in the pub.”

He added: “Innis & Gunn has performed incredibly well in the off-trade over the last year and these nine new national listings will enable our drinkers to enjoy even more from Innis & Gunn, whether that be at home, at parties and summer BBQs or watching the upcoming Euros with family and friends.”

Innis & Gunn is now the third biggest craft beer brand in the UK off-trade sector and the number one imported craft beer in Canada.

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