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Could this model streamline US craft beer distribution?

BevPort Distribution has partnered with Country Malt Group (CMG) to help breweries gain better visibility and grow their businesses in the US.

The business, which will launch on 1 February, will provide brewers entry into Florida at a 10%-15% savings in cost. According to the business, “by simply signing up, filling out licensing information, and uploading images and pricing, brewers can post their brands for sale to retailers across the state”. Additionally, the portal will mean that the business can also “handling shipping, warehousing, invoicing, and collecting payments” and essentially “saving brewers’ time and money”.

The BevPort Distribution Portal is the brainchild of industry veterans and entrepreneurs, James Williams and Philip Guana who, together, share over 50 years of combined beverage industry experience and have previously been involved in other e-commerce solutions with Edge Beverage Consulting.

Speaking to the drinks business, Williams said: “BevPort is a massive game changer for craft brewers. They can now bypass major barriers to entry by not waiting to be signed with a large distributor with thousands of brands. They can simply sign up and be able to begin selling into Florida within days. Now small craft brewers will have access to the entire state of Florida to sell their brands and be seen by 5,000 retailers.”

Guana said: “BevPort will revolutionise the beer industry and streamline the entire process. Using state-of-the-art logistics and warehousing through a digital distribution portal, BevPort will make selling beer faster, easier, and less expensive compared to traditional distribution.”

Describing how craft brewers get on board with Bevport, Williams told db: “When a brewer signs up, he just has to fill out his business information and upload his brand into the portal. The only up front costs are US$30 per label to submit to the state (state cost) and then a US$29.99 monthly membership fee. That’s it. BevPort only charges a 10% margin as opposed to traditional distributors who charge 30%-40%. The savings are significant. They just need to go to and sign up.”

Williams explained: “Distribution consolidation has prevented many breweries from gaining access to retailers and customers. BevPort finally gives those breweries a chance. Every brewery deserves an opportunity to connect with retailers and consumers who want to taste their amazing beer.”

Speaking about the partnership, CMG president Bryan Bechard pointed out that, right now, “brewers currently face limited beer distribution options, long distributor approval processes, heavy fees and other related challenges” so “CMG is always looking for opportunities to better service our customers and help them be successful”.

By his own confession, Bechard admitted: “We’re excited to work with BevPort as it will assist our customers in gaining more access to the market while putting more control into the hands of the brewer.”

The business, which will go live in Florida first, is due to grow into key markets across the US. According to the company, any brewers who sign up for BevPort will immediately be introduced to 5,000 buying accounts through strategic delivery partners.

Williams revealed: “BevPort is planning on launching Texas and California by the end of 2024. Then there is a five-state plan for 2025.” Plus, he hinted: “There is a plan of this to go global internationally as well. But in the meantime, BevPort will also help imported brands to provide access to the USA market.”

He observed: “As traditional beer distributors continue to consolidate with their competition, there becomes fewer and fewer avenues for brands to grow their footprint and reach new consumers.”

Williams told db that, he thinks that, essentially, “BevPort is the answer to these market limitations,” and insisted: “Brewers are making these delicious products that are thriving in their communities, and they should have the opportunity to share it and thrive elsewhere as well.”

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