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Innis & Gunn celebrates 10 years with record results

Scottish brewer Innis & Gunn has marked a double celebration with both its tenth birthday and record financial results in 2012.

Dougal Sharp with his new Innis & Gunn Lager

Sustained growth in its core markets, along with a roll-out of a draught product have helped the company’s turnover increase by 23% to £9.137 million.

Exports are a huge part of the brewer’s business, accounting for 80% of its turnover in 2012, with the US leading the way as case sales doubled in 2012. The company also had success in Canada and Sweden with sales up 15% by volume in Canada and the beer overtaking Newcastle Brown Ale to become Sweden’s best-selling import ale brand.

Dougal Sharp, founder of Innis & Gunn, said: “The investment we made in our business has enabled us to better service our existing core markets.

“We have focussed on building even stronger relationships with our distributors and retail partners, on delivering world class customer service, and on ensuring our supply chain is able to keep pace with growing demand at home and abroad. After all there is no point having brilliant products if we can’t continue to supply our customers’ needs on time and in full.

“The motivation for us has never been to get our product out to as many countries as possible. It’s been about building real scale in a few markets. I enjoy playing a direct part in that by regularly meeting distributors and customers in market. And gladly our strategy seems to be working – 23% growth in any year would be welcome, never mind at the height of a global downturn.”

Through 2012 the brewer invested £1.5m in working capital, infrastructure and manpower, which included doubling its workforce from 16 to 32.

CFO, David Cockburn, commented: “Following a successful 2011 we planned to develop our infrastructure to keep pace with our continued growth. Thus far our business has a well-established three-year investment cycle which reinvests our profits for future growth.

“The investment in 2012, the first year of a new three-year cycle, was our most significant to date because of its magnitude, however the board and I felt that without it we may not be able to service our customers effectively.”

As part of its tenth anniversary celebrations Innis & Gunn has put in place a programme of seasonal and limited edition launches.

Sharp added: “We were heading to a major milestone and I really wanted to make a mark on the year. I started Innis & Gunn because I believed we had discovered a remarkable beer flavour. That strength of feeling and conviction is even greater now and 2013 for me was an opportunity to fire up as many consumers as possible by getting innovative with our oak-aged beers, and also extending the portfolio to bridge the gap between mainstream brands and our core range. We developed our single-biggest product release calendar to date, encompassing a new seasonal line-up and craft-brewed lager, which joined the portfolio in the spring.”

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