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Fri 12th Jan 2018 - Update: BrewDog hits £10m target, Hawksmoor, Brewhouse & Kitchen
BrewDog hits £10m target: Scottish brewer and retailer BrewDog has hit its £10m Equity for Punks V crowdfunding target in the past hour. The company stated: “For the £10m target raise we are concentrating on three specific projects to help us grow faster and move more quickly to meet the ever-increasing demand for our beers. The BrewDog Overworks (£3m): Our new temple to the arts of mixed culture fermentation, is up and running thanks to the amazing work of our construction crew and the team hand-picked by the awesome Richard Kilcullen. With beer already in oak, we want to use this investment to turbo-charge the range and reach of our Overworks programme – to truly harness this fascinating series of eye-opening beers. New Ellon Brewhouse (£5m): It was a proud moment when we cut the ribbon on our 300HL Site 3 brewhouse in mid-2016 – but within two years we have already reached capacity; we still can’t keep up with demand. The investment received from our ever-growing army of Equity Punks will help us reach more people than ever with super-fresh Ellon-brewed craft beer. Infrastructure (£2m): With our new Equity Punk community thirsty for beer around the world, coupled with our continued international expansion, we need everything in place to give us a platform to increase the size of our company for those who invested in it. So some of the initial £10m raised will go towards systems, operations, people and warehouse space for all the new beers we can brew. Any funds we raise over and above the initial goal will also be allocated to incredible projects here at BrewDog. Every penny raised will be reinvested so we can make these plans a reality and can grow BrewDog for those who have become shareholders. Together we will continue to put the people who care in control and make other people as passionate about great craft beer as all of us are.”

Hawksmoor lines up Edinburgh opening: Hawksmoor has revealed plans to open in a mothballed building in central Edinburgh that was once an office for the Royal Bank of Scotland. The 170-cover restaurant will open in the former Royal Bank of Scotland Hall, a grade A-listed building in St Andrew Square, this summer. One of Scotland’s leading chefs, Andrew Fairlie, issued a warning about the restaurant’s arrival. “It’s about to get tougher for independent restaurants in Edinburgh in an already tough market,” he wrote on Twitter. Hawksmoor’s original site was opened in Spitalfields, close to where architect Nicholas Hawksmoor built Christ Church. Subsequently, there are four other restaurants in London – in Seven Dials, Air Street near Piccadilly Circus, Knightsbridge, and the Guildhall district of the City. Most recently the company opened its first restaurant outside London, Hawksmoor Manchester in Deansgate (near Spinningfields). A branch is also due to open in Westfield World Trade Center in Lower Manhattan, New York, in the near future. Speaking about the Edinburgh branch, co-founder Will Beckett said: “We’re really excited about opening Hawksmoor in Edinburgh, not just because we’ll get to spend more time in such an amazing city but because we’re going to be able to indulge in two things we love – produce and working with beautiful old buildings. It’s no secret Scotland has some of the world’s best ingredients and we have an opportunity to bring life back to a building of national importance that’s been closed off to the public for the past ten years.” The restaurant will be based within the 1942 building designed by architects Leslie Grahame Thomson and Arthur Davis, which has lain empty for a number of years and is on the at-risk register.

Brewhouse & Kitchen reports 5.25% festive like-for-likes, plans seven more sites in 2018: Brewhouse & Kitchen, which operates 17 brewpubs, has reported its Christmas like-for-like performance increased by 5.25%. Managing director Simon Bunn said: “We are pleased with our performance over this period. We achieved over 16% growth during Christmas 2016, so 2017 sales were up against a very strong performance. The business was challenged due to the poor weather in the Midlands and the north but our team managed the situation professionally and we were able to ensure we made the most of a few difficult days. Our Experience business also went from strength to strength and we saw significant growth in bookings – Beer Masterclasses grew by 27% (an educational two-hour beer tasting); and our Brewery Experience days (a day learning how to brew beer) grew by 35% for the period. Our gift card was also very successful during the period, achieving £60,000 of online and over-the-counter sales. These sales normally translate into experiences in the early part of the year. Our sales data and research is showing an emerging trend whereby our guests are arranging their own experiences with partners, friends and colleagues, in addition to the more traditional gift purchase for single participation. In response, the company launched a Beer and Food Matching experience in mid-December, initial interest has been excellent. Brewhouse & Kitchen will be further expanding its experience portfolio later this year.” Brewhouse & Kitchen is on-site in Cardiff and Milton Keynes. Further locations are under review, but five further sites are expected for 2018.”

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