Somerset brewery bought out of administration by rival

Wild Beer Co

A Somerset brewery which collapsed into administration last year has been bought by a Kent beer maker.

Wild Beer Co, which was based in Shepton Mallet and had a taproom in Bristol, fell into administration in December.

The company blamed adverse trading conditions including inflation, rising costs  and loss of export sales for the failure of the business.

Ashford-based Curious Brewery, which was itself acquired by private equity firm Risk Capital Partners two years ago as part of a carve out from wine business Chapel Down, had agreed to buy the Wild Beer brands.

It said the agreement would double the size of its existing operation.

Wild Beer was launched in 2012 by Andrew Cooper and Brett Ellis, who also ran a taproom  at Wapping Wharf in Bristol.

The deal is for Wild Beer Co’s beer, brands and intellectual property, which Curious has bought out of administration.

Willd Beers brands will now sit alongside Curious’ premium English lager Curious Brew.

As a result five people will transfer across to Curious Brewery. It has not been made clear what will happen to the Somerset brewery.

Curious Brewery has said it intends to honour the subscriptions and discounts available to current members of Wild Beer Co’s Secret Cellar Club and previous shareholders.

Curious Brewery chair Mark Crowther said: “We are delighted to be collaborating with some of the original team from Wild Beer Co to maintain the original innovative and creative spirit of that business.

“Adding their delicious craft beers to our stable of award-winning premium brands, Wild Beer Co’s range fits perfectly alongside our existing portfolio, delivering a range of interesting and differentiated beers.

“The Wild Beer Co acquisition brings a lot of positives including high-quality beers and distinctive brands, impressive distribution in both the on and off-trade, as well as a significant direct-to-consumer e-commerce operation.

“This new chapter for Wild Beer Co will bring some stability, placing the business on a sure footing. For Curious, this is an important step in our journey to become one of the UK’s leading brewers of specialist, premium beer and ciders.”


Click here to sign up to receive our new South West business news...