Blog by Max Upton

Crowdfunder are supporting independent breweries to get back on track after what has been an extremely difficult year for the industry. In doing so we are offering zero platform fees and added coaching support for beer and brewery crowdfunding projects. 

During the first lockdown, 82% of independent breweries saw a sudden drop in sales as the hospitality industry came to a standstill. 65% even ceased operations completely. Breweries had to adapt to survive and many turned to Crowdfunder to support their efforts. During this time, 60+ breweries raised over £1,000,000 on Crowdfunder! 

This year we’ve already seen independent breweries raise over £450,000 from 1000s of dedicated locals and supporters through crowdfunding. Plus there are many more breweries working behind the scenes to set up their own campaigns to aid their recovery as the hospitality industry starts to reopen. Whether it’s to open up a new ‘covid-safe’ outdoor taproom space, upgrade brewery equipment to support direct to consumer trade, or to simply make up for lost cash flow with Pay it Forward, the options and innovative ideas breweries are coming up with are almost endless. 

When the team behind Skinner’s Brewery set up their Crowdfunder, they had no idea just how much support they would receive! They were struggling and needed urgent funds to help them survive and the crowd rallied around, helping them surpass their original target and raise over £150,000.

Stuart, a member of the Skinner’s team, told us, “We were nervous about launching our crowdfunding campaign knowing how many people and businesses are struggling right now, and it’s never easy admitting that you need help. However, it seems we needn’t have worried! Not only did our followers and the wider public understand the massive challenge we faced, but they supported and shared our campaign with a generosity beyond our wildest dreams. We hit the ground running and achieved our target within the first four days. For us, that first £100,000 was a survival pot to pay bills, buy ingredients, build up stock ready for summer and increase staff levels so that we could operate properly again.”

He continued, “With our stretch funding target of £150,000 we pledged to give back to the community which had supported us so emphatically. Thankfully we achieved that stretch target, and so we are now building an outdoor bar area here at the brewery – a project we’ve been dreaming of for several years. It will be a game-changer for the brewery, giving us another income stream and making the business more versatile and resilient for the future. We couldn’t have done it without Crowdfunder and the great support we received from the Crowdfunder team.” 

Why are breweries so successful?

What is the secret ingredient, we hear you ask. Well, independent breweries are so often the hub of communities and have many dedicated locals ready to support them. The reasons for crowdfunding are often clear as day and something the locals can get behind. For example, opening up a new outdoor taproom. Now who wouldn’t want that this summer as restrictions ease? Ultimately, the success of so many breweries is down to the excellent reward opportunities they offer in return for a donation. These can range from beer discount vouchers and BOGOF deals to money-off memberships to be redeemed in their taproom when they reopen. Breweries can even offer tours, brew day experiences, venue hire and parties (when it’s safe to do so). The list just goes on and on!

So let’s help the craft beer and brewery industry get back on track! If you’re a brewery that wants to turn to crowdfunding to aid your reopening, Crowdfunder are currently offering zero platform fees for beer and brewery crowdfunding projects.

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