The Goa Brewing Company (known for its popular ‘People’s Lager’ and ‘Eight Finger Eddie’ craft brews) has announced that it has raised $700k from marquee investors such as K Ganesh (Serial Entrepreneur, Promoter – BigBasket, Portea Medical, Bluestone, Homelane), Samrath Bedi (Executive Director – Forrest Essentials) and other members of Ekcle Ventures (angel network).
This top-up funding round will help the company increase production and realize its market expansion plans. Saama Capital and DSG Consumer Partners had invested early on in the. Company.
The development can be seen in the light of a significant surge in the demand for bottled craft beer (for home consumption) in India post the pandemic and multiple lockdowns.
Suraj Shenai, Founder of Goa Brewing Company, said, “We started brewing in small and exclusive batches at our craft-brewery in Sangolda, Goa (housed in a heritage Indo-Portuguese bungalow), unlike the beer brewed in large commercial industrial complexes which use a multitude of synthetic ingredients. We have stuck to brewing clean label beers made with only whole natural grains, hops & fruits sourced largely from local farms. Without any marketing spends or advertising campaigns our beers have developed a following with sheer word of mouth publicity. This brand love from our consumer-evangelists has allowed us to focus on the product and push our boundaries of brewing while gradually building a community based on shared values.”
“Our Goan rice-based ‘People’s Lager’ is the hero product in the portfolio that will cater to consumers seeking alternatives in the premium light beer category. And brews such as ‘Eight-Finger- Eddie’, ‘Breakfast Cereal’ and “Pineapple Saison” cater to consumers who seek more excitement & diversity in craft beer. Besides these we have many new brews lined up for market launch. With our limited capacity, we could initially supply only in Goa and some cases in Bengaluru to test the market. The uncertainty and disruption due to the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns made us put our expansion plans on hold. This fund-raise will help us launch in Bengaluru and Delhi markets this festive season, along with expanding our production capacity and hiring key senior professionals to the team”, added Suraj Shenai.
The India Beer Market Outlook 2023 report brought out by Bonafide Research, states that the Indian beer market is expected to grow significantly even as consumers shift from standard to premium brands. This will result in the launch of new craft beer brands, which can go on to occupy 10-12 per cent of the overall market, with a lot of room for growth, as seen in markets like the US.
K Ganesh, Promoter of Big Basket and one of the investors, said, “Suraj with his passion, has brought a refreshing freshness, artisanal quality and built a brand in a highly competitive Goa market that stands out. We are very happy to partner with him in scaling the brands into other geographies. The space of craft beer in large volumes is severely undeserved and with offerings like ‘People Lager’, ‘Eight Finger Eddie’ and many other brews under development, the future is exciting for GBC.”