Mighty Craft News

2020.10.07, 1 min read

Founders First appoints Coles Group’s GM of Marketing – Liquor to head up its Marketing & Innovation

We have appointed Yolanda Uys to the newly created role of Marketing & Innovation Director. Yolanda is a highly experienced innovator and marketer in liquor retailing, Yolanda has been Coles Group’s General Manager Marketing for the past three years, leading the marketing strategy for Coles Liquor and successfully relaunched the Liquorland and Vintage Cellars brands. Yolanda shared some wonderful comments on her newest appointment, “Australia has some of the world’s most talented craft producers and I can’t wait to help them accelerate their growth and consolidate their brands on a local, national and international stage. “Coupled with a world class team of highly talented functional experts, under the leadership of Mark and supported by a forward-thinking Board, this is an unmissable opportunity.” Prior to this, Yolanda was Woolworths Group’s Head of Marketing for Dan Murphy’s for five years where she championed projects such as the Dan Murphy’s Loyalty Program, and The Dan Murphy’s Cellar on Chapel Street. Haysman is thrilled by Yolanda’s appointment. “Yolanda brings a wealth of industry knowledge, experience and diversity having worked not only here in Australia but abroad in South Africa, London, Barcelona and Budapest, building world class brands across both retail and FMCG. “With Yolanda’s passion for building people and teams, and her proven track record in delivering ambitious marketing strategy outcomes, both in a physical and digital sense, we can’t wait to see what we can achieve together,” he says. Welcome to the team Yolanda! Read more here.

2020.10.30, 2 min read

Growth Continues To Accelerate Whilst $16m Capital Raise Completed

We have today announced to the ASX our Q1 results which reflect ongoing growth acceleration in both beer and spirits with wholesale growth at +99% and non-Victorian venues getting back to ~ 80% of pre COVID levels. Key operational highlights included:Completed a capital raise for $16.1m ensuring the business is well funded and able to execute its stated growth strategy Continued to accelerate growth with group revenue growth of +133% vs Q1 FY20Wholesale revenue growth at +99% with Beer growing at 96.4% and Spirits at 117% vs Q1 FY20Strong performance of Spirits which will accelerate with the launch of Tasmanian Whisky Co which will have its first release of single malt Whisky in market in Q3 FY21Distribution growth continues to accelerate with total distribution points up 5,525 to 10,069 an increase of 84% in the quarter (i.e. vs the end of FY20) Appointment of Yolanda Uys into the Role of Marketing and Innovation Director reflecting upweighted investment in brandsExecution of an agreement with Bevchain who will manage national cold chain storage and transport for Founders First brandsLaunch of a new Operating model for Founders First that simplifies the distribution model and offers improved customer service and lower cost across the group The Mighty Hunter Valley continues to demonstrate enormous potential despite the restrictions in place trading ~$110k per week through the recent school holidays despite capacity restricted to 300 (vs 600 PAX license) Kangaroo Island Distillery shortlisted for International Gin Producer of the Year at the IWSC London to be announced on November 18thKIS Whisky release planned for Q3 FY21Commenting on the first quarter of FY21, Founders First Managing Director, Mark Haysman said: “A very strong start to the year with the completion of a significant capital raise in September which enables us to execute our growth strategy and invest in the business to fuel further growth. I am very pleased with our growth profile which is tracking ahead of expectations as the macro theme around craft continues to accelerate and retailers are responding well to our model which simplifies their business and in turn provides better outcomes for their customers".You can view the full detailed announcement here.

2020.10.28, 2 min read

Founders First launches new distribution model via national logistics partnership with Bevchain

We are pleased to announce that Founders First has signed an agreement with Bevchain (Bevchain Pty Ltd ACN 118 451 773) to operate a national logistics network that will manage cold store warehousing and transport across the country targeting craft beer. The cold store logistics network will be operational from November. The agreement includes a Letter of Intent (“LOI”) for Bevchain and Founders First to work as partners to expand the network in time to potentially provide an Industry solution for Independent Craft. Mark Haysman said: “This agreement is a significant step in our journey. There is currently no national cold chain Craft logistics solution in the country. To have the leading industry player in Bevchain building the infrastructure and providing Founders First with preferred supply services is a big endorsement of our model and future potential. We have significant plans to expand this further in time to potentially provide an efficient and effective industry solution for Independent Craft through leveraging the Mighty Craft platform and Bevchain’s infrastructure.” Misha Shliapnikoff, President Bevchain commented: “We are excited to partner with Founders First to address what is currently a fragmented craft beer market. Bevchain is a specialist in the warehousing and distribution of alcoholic beverages, with a national cold chain network that is trusted by leading suppliers of beer, wine and spirits across Australia and New Zealand. We see this opportunity as a long-term partnership in which Bevchain can support Founders First and Mighty Craft with logistics infrastructure and expertise, underpinned by our strong commitment to safe and efficient supply chain operations.” The partnership unlocks a new distribution model for Founders First which will significantly simplify the business, drive cost out and enable “one Order, one Invoice, one Delivery.” The new distribution model will unlock better service, lower cost and simplification for craft producers and retailers via a strategic partnership with Bevchain, the trusted beverage logistics partner of choice in Australia and New Zealand. To read the full announcement click here

2020.09.17, 1 min read

Now Open: Founders First Limited Share Placement Plan

Application forms must be sent by mail and both the form and payment must be received by 5:00pm (AEDT) Friday, 9 October 2020 On Monday, 7 September 2020, Founders First Limited (Company) announced a Share Purchase Plan available to investors holding shares at 7pm on Friday 4th of September. The Offer Booklet can be viewed here and you should read this before deciding whether to participate. To access your personalised Application Form: Log onto www.investorcentre.com/au using your Holder ID and postcode or username and password Select ‘Statements and Documents’ and click to view your form titled SPP Applications dated 17 September 2020. If you have any queries or need assistance, please contact the Computershare Offer Information Line on 1300 850 505 (within Australia) or +61 3 9415 4000 (outside Australia), Monday to Friday 8:30am to 5:00pm (AEST/AEDT). Application forms must be sent by mail and both the form and payment must be received by 5:00pm (AEDT) Friday, 9 October 2020 On Monday, 7 September 2020, Founders First Limited (Company) announced a Share Purchase Plan available to investors holding shares at 7pm on Friday 4th of September. The Offer Booklet can be viewed here and you should read this before deciding whether to participate. To access your personalised Application Form: 1. Log onto https://www.investorcentre.com/au using your Holder ID and postcode or username and password 2. Select ‘Statements and Documents’ and click to view your form titled SPP Applications dated 17 September 2020. If you have any queries or need assistance, please contact the Computershare Offer Information Line on 1300 850 505 (within Australia) or +61 3 9415 4000 (outside Australia), Monday to Friday 8:30am to 5:00pm (AEST/AEDT).

2020.09.07, 2 min read

Founders First to accelerate growth strategy after receiving commitments for A$7.5 million placement

We’re pleased to share we’ve received firm commitments for A$7.5 million (before costs) in new equity via a fully committed two tranche share placement to institutional and sophisticated investors through the issue of approximately 21.43 million new shares at $0.35 per share. We also intend to launch a non-underwritten Share Purchase plan, raising approximately A$1.5 million. The Equity Raising will be used to fund our growth strategy and will include funding of near term capital investments into Kangaroo Island Distillery, Seven Seasons (including Green Ant Gin), brand investment and growth opportunities. Some Key Highlights Include: Founders First to raise up to $9m through a $7.5m Placement and $1.5m Share Purchase Plan (SPP) at $0.35 per share The Placement was oversubscribed and received strong support from leading industry icon Chris Malcolm, who will own 7% of the Company following settlement of $2.5m subscription, Greencape (FFL’s largest institutional shareholder), and a number of new institutional shareholders who joined the register after taking significant positions Funds raised will further support the Company’s growth strategy, including further investment into Kangaroo Island Distillery, Seven Seasons (home of Green Ant Gin) and brand investment and will leave the company well placed to capitalise on consolidation opportunities across the craft sector Following the settlement of the $7.5m Placement, the Company will be well funded with approximately $25m cash available including the recently announced debt facility with Pure Asset Management Managing Director Mark Haysman Said “There is a huge opportunity over the coming years to create a high growth scale business that drives the craft sector forward and having the right investors on our register is critical to our success. We feel our register is high quality, patient capital that understands the size of our ambition and will be able to help fund the success of this company” For further information on the placement and Share Purchase Plan view here

2020.09.01, 1 min read

Founders First launches hard seltzer via it’s innovation arm Torquay Beverage Company

We’re giving the boozy seltzer category a crack in partnership with the Torquay Beverage Company and we couldn’t be more excited! Seltzer has dominated in the US and is quickly filling up the shelves in our local bottle shops too. NoSh Boozy Seltzer is going to be available across five states in 300 BWS and Dan Murphy’s stores as well as 200 independents. This ranging will help us to continue to get NoSh in the hands of all Aussies who are keen to try the boozy soda water. The better for you, ready to drink beverage comes in two flavours, Mango + Pineapple and Peach. Blended with natural flavours and brewed to remove almost all sugars, NoSh is low calories, packs a punch and incredibly tasty. Founders First CEO and Managing Director Mark Haysman couldn’t be happier with the result, “From idea to launch in less than six months is a great achievement in anyone’s language. Nick is a truly innovative young Australian entrepreneur, and we have a very productive business partnership with a number of new product launches on the horizon. It’s great to have the endorsement of Dan Murphy’s, BWS and the independent channel to bring NoSh to life. We see a lot of potential for this brand on-premise as well.” Founder and Torquay Beverage Company CEO Nick Cogger continued, “We love the partnership from Founders First and Mighty Craft. With their backing, insights and expertise we are able to move at pace to develop liquid, packaging and a go-to-market strategy and push the limits with our beverage creation”. Get all the details here.

2020.08.31, 2 min read

Founders First share FY20 Results

It's been a busy day as we share some exciting announcements with the ASX. Firstly, our results for FY20 are out. It was a big year for us this year and we have achieved some incredible milestones. We're delivering on our promises as our mighty team continues to build momentum and take on the beverage industry keeping us on track for a big FY21. Managing Director Mark Haysman said: "I'm extremely proud of what the Founders First Team has achieved in FY20. Our results are strong, growth is accelerating and we are executing our strategy at pace during these challenging times." Performance Highlights: Maiden ASX listed FY results reflect strong growth and momentum into FY21 Cash on hand of $11.4 million Revenue from Ordinary activities $9.2m – an increase of +131% vs FY19 Total Income of $10.4 million – an increase of +160% vs FY19 Wholesale revenue growth of +113% vs FY19 on a 100% basis (+260% for consolidated entities) National Distribution increase of +151% vs FY19 with significant gains to come through additional distribution points secured at the end of FY20 Adjusted FY20 loss of $5.9 million removing one-off costs associated with ASX listing and legal fees associated with business investments / acquisitions and COVID-19 Founders First has a strong balance sheet and is positioned for further growth as further industry consolidation occurs Wholesale Sales – 100% Basis Unique Distribution Points This year has been a significant one for us and our journey. Some of our milestones were: Listing on the ASX on the 17th of December 2019 Completed four acquisitions and executed eight equity investments Highly capable team in place, assembled from various Tier 1 backgrounds and geared to create a significant and sustainable business over the coming years Investment in digital infrastructure that will ensure Founders First has world-class eCommerce capability and financial management through an ERP rollout Delivered strong growth through Q3 and Q4 despite the impact of COVID-19 on venues across the country Launched a new Industry facing identity “Mighty Craft” that better encapsulates the Company’s vision and purpose. Founders First is considering a company-wide rebrand for shareholder approval at the AGM Agreed a Joint Business Plan with Coles ensuring alignment of long-term growth aspirations Expanded into Whisky with the first batch of premium Tasmanian and Kangaroo Island Whisky in the market mid FY21 Closed FY20 with a strong balance sheet and is poised for further growth given the momentum gains seen towards the end of the fiscal year Read the full FY20 results commentary and FY20 report by clicking the links. We've also just secured a $7.5 Million debt facility with Pure Asset Management so we can continue unleashing the growth of independent craft. You can read more about that here.

2020.08.25, 2 min read

Founders First Expands Into Whisky

Founders First Limited is pleased to announce a partnership agreement with Mr Chris Malcolm, former CEO of ASX listed Australian Whisky Holdings and former Chairman of Lark Distillery, to develop and co-invest in a new whisky business currently named NewCo Pty Ltd. The agreement includes the purchase and rebranding of 68 barrels (just over 7,400 litres) of maturing “new make” whisky stock which was originally distilled at Nant Distillery in the Tasmanian Highlands. Each barrel has been inspected, weighed and checked for alcohol content, and is of high quality. The first small batch release of this stock is planned for December 2020. Earlier this year the Company also acquired Kangaroo Island Distillery one of Australia’s first dedicated gin distilleries, which has plans to further extend its product portfolio including a much-anticipated release of its first batch of single malt whisky, also planned for December this year. Founders First CEO and Managing Director Mr Mark Haysman says “Whisky is the largest spirits category in Australia and growing in popularity globally. Our combined position with NewCo and Kangaroo Island Distillery along with our sales and distribution capability places us in a strong position to scale and grow in this exciting category in both domestic and export markets. Both businesses have strong whisky credentials and capabilities to barrel age premium offerings that originate in two of the most respected craft provenances in Australia - the pristine altitudes of the Tasmanian highlands and unspoilt natural surrounds of Kangaroo Island. Few people know the business of whisky better than Chris. We look forward to working with him to bring our new Whisky vision to life.” Mr Chris Malcolm says “Having a passion and long-term association with the whisky industry I am looking forward to working with the Founders First team to realise our shared vision of building a high quality globally recognised whisky brand. It’s exciting to be part of building a new brand which already has access to such high quality whisky in barrels, some of which will be ready for release as early as December this year. We are fortunate to have 12 Barrels in Virgin White Oak which were part of the Nant exclusive program, the only one of its kind in Australia using Virgin White Oak. A 500ml bottle of this whisky retails for around $400 a bottle. Read the full announcement here.

2020.08.20, 5 min read

The Growth of Craft Beer and Spirits

Of interest will be a piece from Simon Mount of Aitken Murray Capital Partners that summaries his view on the Founders First business and the growth of craft beer and spirits. Simon is an expert in the craft beer and spirits category. The report has some valuable insights on the craft industry and the Founders First business model. .responsive { width: 100%; max-width: 1000px; height: auto; } The craft beer and spirits industry has been leaching market share from 'Big Beer' and the likes for years, with no signs of slowing down. Founders First is capitalising on this trend by taking a value-add approach to small to medium sized craft brewers & distillers and helps them with the most common, complex and time consuming parts of running the business. The major beer and spirit companies like Heineken, AB Inbev and Diageo trade on 20-25x PE and yet their traditional brands have been ex growth for years. We think the major brands will continue to acquire the higher growth, higher margin craft brands. Craft Brew Alliance would be the closest listed comp to FFL in the US which is currently under takeover from AB Inbev for total value of approx. US$320m. Craft Brew owns brands like Kona Brewing and Redhook Brewery. In Australia we have had CUB (formerly AB InBev now Asahi) buy Mick Fanning’s Balter Brewing, 4 Pines and Pirate Life. Coca-Cola Amatil has also bought Feral Brewing and Yenda. Asahi has bought Green Beacon and also owns Mountain Goat and Cricketers Arms. Kirin owned Lion who make XXXX and Tooheys also own Little Creatures, Furphy and have recently bought 50% of Four Pillars Gin. Nb. Gin consumption in Australia was up 33% last year in Australia. Recently listed Founders First (FFL) is a Craft Beer & Spirits brand accelerator and aggregator. FFL's unique revenue model gives them a first mover advantage in the space, and recent results highlight just how effective management is at executing on the plan laid out in their prospectus. Importantly, the management team is well qualified to run a much larger business. The board and management lead by Mark Haysman (former CEO of Port Adelaide and ex CUB) with the support of Stuart Morton (co-founder and inaugural Jetty Road chairman) and Dan Wales (co-founder and Beer Category GM) is full of ex big beer and food people from the likes of Mondelez, Lion, and Treasury Wines. Brand Portfolio Things like Marketing, Distribution, Logistics and Compliance are aspects to the Brewing and Distilling business that smaller players simply can’t do themselves profitably. This is where Founders First adds value on the Supply Side. By injecting capital alongside the breweries and distilleries existing shareholders, as well as offering experienced management and access a growing sales & distribution arm, Founders First scales these business's faster than they could ever hope to do themselves. This translates directly into added equity value as they take stakes (controlling or minority) in these brands and then grow them to profitability faster. Case Studies: Jetty Road Acquired pre-IPO and increased investment with convertible note on 30th March, now owns 64% Approx. $3.25m investment Capital injection has allowed plans to expand production to 1.5 million Litres to support wholesale and venue demand. Distribution points increased from 146 to 883 through its Indie Craft Collective distribution arm Revenue growing strongly Kangaroo Island Spirits Acquired on 2 March 2020 (100%) Purchased on 0.5x Revenue Produces circa 30,000 bottle per year First export orders to Japan & Singapore receive in May Releasing first ever Kangaroo Island whisky later this year Distribution Network In addition to the equity value of the FFL's brand portfolio, the company adds significant value through their growing distribution arm. This encompasses multiple parts of the business including their supply agreements with major retailers including Coles & Woolworths, their venue distribution segment, as well as their upcoming new online portal for wholesalers and preferred customers. The company owns the customer relationship and acts as the conduit between larger buyers and smaller producers. The margins on craft beers being sold in four and six packs are much higher than a standard slab of VB. You can see evidence of this as most Bottle-O's now stock their craft beers front and centre. There is clearly demand for the craft beer and craft spirit but there are supply issues for the larger players like Coles and Woolworths who struggle to effectively coordinate with small craft producers. An online portal is under construction and is expected to be fully operational by year end. It offers a 'Single Invoice' service to the venues (unique distribution points) and bottle-shops that wish to stock their product range. This significantly streamlines the buying process for independent venues and bottle-o's that want exposure to the growing Craft segment that their customers desire. You can see below where Founders First fits into the distribution equation. Their dominant position in the market continues to be solidified as time goes on. Venues We believe that one of the reasons the company’s share price has underperformed despite a promising business model and skyrocketing revenue growth, is that the company has exposure to venue operations. The Jetty Road venue in Melbourne is the only venue closed due to COVID and contributed ~20% to revenue in 1H20, however the share price is down ~40% from the IPO. The remaining venues are all returning to profitability post COVID, most operating at roughly 70% capacity. These venues are not just profitable business's in their own right, they are also invaluable marketing tools that offer consumers a chance to experience the beers and spirits that they can buy in-store. You can see below the geographical distribution of the company’s assets of various Breweries, Distilleries and Venues. The company has indicated since IPO of their intention to continue expanding their footprint with further acquisitions and partnerships. Spirits and International Distribution The companies spirits brands, Kangaroo Island Spirits and Green Ant Gin, both secure premium pricing due to their exclusivity and quality. As mentioned above, the Kangaroo Island "O'Gin" brand recently won multiple first place awards in international wine and spirits competitions. Momentum Foods and Wines is the company’s international distribution arm with exposure to China. This offers a platform for Premiumisation and growth for the companies Liquor Brands. As seen below, the demand for Craft Beer far outperformed the demand the total beer market over the Covid Lockdown and subsequent re-opening. This is in part due to the 'Buy Local' movement, but also reflects the changing preferences of consumers away from traditional beers. This is a fascinating industry that will continue to develop. Founders First are leveraged to the high growth and high margin segment of the industry and have an incredible platform to continue to grow from.

2020.08.13, 2 min read

A Mighty Bright Future: An Independent Craft Portfolio In Demand

Founders First has created a new industry facing identity, Mighty Craft, one all-encompassing brand that positions the company as a leader in the Independent Craft Beverage Industry. Mighty Craft is fast becoming Australia’s strongest Independent Craft collective and is unleashing the growth of some of the Country’s best beer and spirits brands, by providing leadership, growth capital, structure and industry know-how. The Mighty Craft beer portfolio has outperformed the total independent craft beer category, growing wholesale sales at over 110% in the last quarter, despite COVID restrictions. (Source: IRI Liquor Weighted Database) It’s clear consumers love the Mighty Craft portfolio, actively supporting authentic, local brands. And it’s not just consumers that are loving them. Kangaroo Island Spirits has once again received one of the highest Industry accolades at the 2020 International Wine and Spirits Competition in London – the only Australian brand to win two gold medals - for their Wild Gin and O’Gin. Launching the new industry facing identity, Founders First Chief Executive and Managing Director Mark Haysman expressed that the new brand better conveys the company’s purpose and values. "We’re a unique collection of people, products and places – with one mighty love of Craft. We will always be pro Founder, but we’re for more than one person. We stand for an industry that punches well above its weight and celebrates creativity, enterprise and local connection. The name Mighty Craft captures the essence of this – we are stronger together.” With a footprint in most Australian states, Mighty Craft is home to award-winning brands including Jetty Road Brewery, Foghorn Brewery, Slipstream Brewing Co, Sparkke Beverage Co, Sauce Brewing Co, Ballistic Beer Co, Kangaroo Island Spirits, Green Ant Gin, Brogans Way and K-Booch. This portfolio of brands is supported by 13 amazing venues around the country, a combination of brewpubs, venues in iconic locations, and distillery cellar doors. All enabling a great opportunity to taste and experience our wonderful brands and connect with the makers and local craft community. Mighty Craft partner and Foghorn Co-Founder Shawn Sherlock said, “It's pretty great to be part of Mighty Craft. With their financial and hands on support Foghorn Brewery has now expanded into the Hunter Valley with a second micro-brewery and taproom. With a shared love of great beer, Mighty Craft have helped get my brand into the hands of more people.” Founders First Ltd (ASX: FFL) will still be the company name and stock symbol. But within industry, the business will now be known as Mighty Craft. View the full announcement here.

2020.08.12, 2 min read

KIS win gold at two international spirit competitions placing them on the world stage

Tucked away from the rest of the world, Kangaroo Island Spirits (KIS) has been cleaning up the biggest awards on both sides of the Atlantic. KIS have received the highest accolades for their gins at both the 2020 International Wine & Spirit Competition (IWSC) and the International Spirits Competition (SIP Awards), and a number of other honours. Last week in London, at The International Wine and Spirits Competition, the world’s largest and most influential spirit awards, KIS had not one, but two gins receive 96 points. Both their Wild and O Gins were rated higher than any other Australian gin in the ‘Oscars’ of world spirit competitions. This week, at the SIP Awards in California, KIS took out the Consumers’ Choice Award 2020 and a Platinum Award for their Whisky Barrel Aged Gin. It was the only Australian gin to receive a Platinum at this years' event and with Wild Gin collecting Double Gold, Old Tom Gin scoring a Gold and O Gin picking up a Silver, KI Spirits were the highest awarded Australian distillery yet again. KIS Founders and Brand Ambassadors, Jon & Sarah Lark, are thrilled about their achievements and are proud to represent Australia on an international scale. “Both the competitions represent great recognition for the winners,” Sarah said. “The IWSC has been operating for over 50 years and is really the ‘Oscars’ of spirit competitions and we really respect the results coming from the SIP Awards who unlike most competitions, have a strong consumer judging focus.” Pierre Gregor, Chairman of the Kangaroo Island Tourism Food Wine and Beverage Association, paid tribute to KIS’ achievements. “From small seeds great things grow and so it is with KIS. KIS’ international standing as a champion boutique Gin producer is a credit to them and is another example of the amazing products and experiences offered on Kangaroo Island. Yet another reason to visit, see, taste and experience Kangaroo Island.” Mr Gregor said. Mark Haysman CEO of Founders First says. “These awards just confirm what we already knew; that Kangaroo Island Spirits represents the pinnacle of craft, not only in Australia, but the world. Jon and Sarah Lark and the KIS team are the embodiment of what craft is all about. They stay true to traditional processes and make spirits that capture a rare purity of flavours and place.” Read more. The award winning gin is available for purchase here. .responsive { width: 100%; max-width: 800px; height: auto; }

2020.08.11, 2 min read

Foghorn Brewery Expands Into The Hunter Valley

In an exciting move for the greater Hunter region, Newcastle’s FogHorn Brewery is expanding into the Hunter Valley, transforming the existing Hunter Beer Co at Potter’s Hotel into a craft beer haven. Newcastle’s first modern craft brewery and restaurant, FogHorn Brewery was established in 2014 with a vision to rejuvenate Newcastle’s hospitality scene bringing with it decades of brewing experience and leading the way in growing Newcastle’s reputation as the craft beer capital of Australia. Six years on FogHorn’s founder Shawn Sherlock will take his vision one step further with business partner Founders First, taking over Hunter Valley institution Hunter Beer Co at Potters Hotel the gateway to Australia’s most visited food and wine region. Joining the ever-expanding FogHorn team are local expert brewers Keith Grice and Daniel Gayner, who will help lead the way with experimentation and create great flavoured brews. The venue will continue to serve The Hunter Beer Co’s iconic beers including the Hunter Kolsch, Bock and the legendary ‘Slaked Magpie’. The new and improved, larger brewery will also be home to FogHorn’s signature brews, including the Young Americans IPA, Newy Pale Ale and Sligo Extra Stout – along with all of their seasonal and limited editions. FogHorn Brewery CEO and Chief Brewing Officer Shawn Sherlock has over 20 years of experience. Awarded Australian Brewer of the Year in 2012, Shawn couldn’t be more excited about their expansion into the Hunter Valley. “When the opportunity to expand further into the region arose, it just made sense. It’s something that the Hunter Valley has been calling for, the site is perfect for us to grow our brand and brewing capabilities.” Local artist Mitch Revs has been commissioned to create a mural wall that will celebrate craft beer and the Hunter Valley region. Known for his bright, fun creations the Newcastle gallery owner art work is hoped to become an iconic piece of local art transforming the brewery wall. Founders First CEO Mark Haysman said they will further invest in the Potters Hotel & FogHorn Brewery Hunter Valley site over the coming months. “We are proud to be partnering with Shawn to extend the reach of Foghorn and accelerate business growth – with FogHorn having its biggest ever month in July from a wholesale perspective. The Greater Hunter region is one of Australia’s most visited and iconic food and wine destinations. We have some exciting plans ahead for Potters Hotel, creating a community hub that showcases Foghorn and our award-winning Australian beer and spirits portfolio which includes KIS, Jetty Road and Sparkke.” FogHorn Brewery Hunter Valley is open Fridays 10am-8pm, with tours from 5pm, Saturdays 10am-10pm, and tours noon and 5pm and Sundays 10am-5pm. To view the full media release, please read here. .responsive { width: 100%; max-width: 800px; height: auto; }

2020.08.07, 3 min read

Happy International Beer Day!

Today marks one of our favourite days of the year, International Beer Day! We’d like to take this opportunity to celebrate all of the unique and delicious beers we have in our portfolio. From juicy, hazy beers like Ballistic’s Hawaiian Haze or Sparkke’s fruity Pale Ale, to the dark and roasty Foghorn Sligo Stout, the tart flavours of Sauce’s Peach Sauce and the sessionable hoppy varieties like Jetty Road’s Pale Ale and Slipstream’s Laguna Tropical Ale we have a beer for everyone and every occasion! Here’s a list of our must tries from each brewery, with some tasty food pairings to try with. .responsive { width: 100%; max-width: 400px; height: auto; } Jetty Road Brewery’s Blake Bowden is offering drinkers a taste of Mornington Peninsula in each can. We can’t go past their sessionable pale ale with a crisp and clean palate, underpinned by a subtle satisfying bitterness. With notes of stone fruit and melon, you don’t want to overpower this beer with big flavours, it goes perfectly with grilled fish and a salsa verde to add some zest and spice to the beer’s delicious fruit flavours. Try it for yourself here. Foghorn Brewery are famous for their big flavour and aroma, bold new take on traditional styles and new inventions from Head Brewer Shawn Sherlock (2012 Australian Brewer of the Year). Shawn’s Sligo Stout was voted Champion Stout at the 2015 Australian Craft Beer Industry Awards. The perfect stout offers layers of dark chocolate and roast coffee character with a strong hop bite. Clean and drinkable for its size this dark and roasty stout goes perfectly with aged cheddars – bringing out the savoury, nutty notes in the cheese and highlighting chocolate notes in the beer. Sparkke, a female founded and led for purpose alcohol company producing 100% natural, award-winning brews. Our tight, sophisticated range of vegan and/or gluten-free bevies deliver delicious diversity to the indie craft space. Sparkke’s new world pilsner is full flavour, partly owed to a tasteful dry hopping of New- Zealand grown Wai-iti and Wakatu hops giving the beer a citrusy and fruity aroma. It is light and refreshing with a creamy mouth feel. This crispy pilsner is the perfect antidote to our favourite pub meal - the classic pub parma. The bright, clean flavour cuts through the salty cheese and smoky ham of a delicious parma. Shop 15% off their range of brews here using the code IBD15. Slipstream was inspired by a visit to the USA and influenced by some of the best breweries in the world! Their brews are balanced and hop forward. Fresh, juicy, zing and zest are all flavours you can expect from brewer Ian Watson. We cannot go past their G Force IPA has sharp grapefruit flavours with hints of pineapple, bubble gum, fruit blossoms, and apricot. Low bitterness and high drinkability. Contrast the comforting flavours of your favourite pizza with this well-balanced IPA. Citrus and pine and just a touch of bitterness play off the savoury sauce and will make the spice in a pepperoni slice pop! Shop here. Ballistic brewery is known for their creative and experimental brewing. Exciting everyone from beer aficionados to casual drinkers, blowing away traditional ideas of what beer should taste like. Their Hawaiian Haze is a hop-driven flavour explosion that screams "DRINK ME"! Juicy aromas effortlessly overlay the fluffy mouthfeel and clean finish. Juicy pineapple overwhelms this beer, so try a sip with a baked cheesecake for something different. The bubbles will blast through the rich, sweet dessert, think of it as adding a pineapple topping. Shop here. Sauce love creating flavoursome beers that can be enjoyed by everyone. Whether you’re a hop-head, a sour-freak, or you just like good quality, drinkable ales, we have a beer for you. Their Bubble & Squeak is consistently rated as one of Australia’s Best NEIPA’s! Overloaded with late hops, delivering a tropical delight to the senses which is hazy and low in bitterness. Grab your favourite takeout Pad Thai to go with this NEIPA. The citrus and bitterness will play well with the lemongrass and tamarind in the dish. Shop here

2020.07.30, 2 min read

FF delivers strong Q4 growth with majority owned brands wholesale revenue+262%

We have today released an ASX announcement detailing highlights and cashflow for the final quarter of FY20. Despite the impact of COVID-19, Q4 results reflect strong revenue growth ensuring the business enters FY21 with significant momentum. Key operating highlights included: The Craft category experienced a significant acceleration of growth in Q4 growing at over +50% (IRI Data 13 weeks to June 15th) as consumers shifted to at home consumption and Founders First brands continue to outperform the category Wholesale quarterly revenue growth for majority-controlled entities of +262% and total portfolio growth +112% vs Q4 19 on a 100% basis despite the closure of venues. Secured a +100% increase in distribution across National Retailers from September (from 2,067 to 4,069 unique distribution points in the Nationals) Secured +42 new on and off premise accounts across the eastern seaboard as part of the Indy Fast Start Program, ensuring a balanced representation across all sales channels Executed a master services agreement with Ultra Commerce to launch an enterprise-grade digital commerce platform powered by Amazon Web Services. This platform will allow for seamless growth and will dramatically simplify the customer experience (B2B) for sales orders Successfully Integrated KIS (Kangaroo Island Distillery) and Potters in the Hunter Valley. These acquisitions are expected to add ~ +$6M to the top line and significant cashflow to the business in FY21. Completed the rebranding of Potters Brewery in the Hunter Valley to Foghorn Brewery Hunter Valley (75%-owned by FFL) which will drive significant growth of the Foghorn brand in one of the most visited tourist destinations in Australia. Launched a Spirits distribution model which will initially sell Kangaroo Island Spirits, Green Ant Gin and Brogan’s Way products throughout Australia Well-funded with $11.4M cash on hand at the end of FY20 Commenting on the final quarter of FY20, Founders First Managing Director, Mark Haysman said: "Our ability to accelerate growth despite the COVID-19 impact to venues is testament to the growing category of craft and the continued strengthening demand. We have been able to continue to drive growth through our focus on quality distribution, particularly through the off-premise channel seeing wholesale revenue growth of +262% for majority-controlled businesses and +112% for the total portfolio. Pleasingly we expect the recent distribution gains to further accelerate growth in H121" To view the full announcement, read here. .responsive { width: 100%; max-width: 800px; height: auto; }

2020.07.22, 2 min read

Brogan's Way and Green Ant Gin Win Silver at London Spirits Competition

Congratulations to Brogan’s Way and Green Ant Gin who have won silver at the London Spirits Competition 2020 awards. The London Spirits Competition recognises spirits with high quality and value. Brogan’s Way has taken home a silver for their Royal Blood and Hearts Afire Gin. Green Ant Gin has also won silver. We’re proud of both brands and excited for their journey. This is a great affirmation as we work with these brands to accelerate and grow them. brands. Green Ant Gin: Traditionally flavoured by Indigenous societies for their medicinal benefits and protein content, native Green Ants are a unique bush tucker hand harvested in the Northern Territory by the Motlop family of the Larrakia people. The Green Ants display vibrant coriander and kaffir lime leaf flavours, with a citrus and lime burst on the palate further enhanced by Finger Lime. Native Juniper (Boobialla) is evident in the floral, perfumed aromatics, while spicy notes of Pepper Berry balance the citrus flavours. Strawberry Gum, Lemon Myrtle and Anise Myrtle provide green, leafy herbaceous characters which replicate traditional English Juniper resin characters. Available for purchase here. Brogan’s Way Royal Blood Gin: Brogan’s Way Royal Blood Gin is the savoury sensation that is our navy strength gin. Complex with a lingering cardamom heat, at 57.2% it has a bit of a kick. Herbal aromas and flavours from the rosemary and bay leaf are seasoned with Australian sea parsley, saltbush and roasted wattle seed giving plenty of good mouthfeel. Available for purchase here. Brogan’s Way Hearts Afire Gin: Brogan’s Way Hearts Afire Gin is our warm spice driven gin. With a unique balance of savoury Australian native botanicals and aromatic winter spices. Sweet orange peel, native strawberry gum and macerated lillypilli offer a full bodied gently sweet backbone, which is warmed by fragrant spicy notes of aniseed myrtle, cloves, nutmeg and cassia bark. Hot green cardamom and black peppercorn are carried through in the long nutty and coffee like finish provide by the soft oils of native roasted wattle seed. A balanced savoury gin with a long warm and gentle spicy finish. .responsive { width: 100%; max-width: 800px; height: auto; } Available for purchase here.

2020.07.06, 1 min read

Founders First Collaborates with Ultra Commerce to Rapidly Deploy Its Digital Platform

It was today announced that Founders First have signed a Master Service Agreement (MSA) with Ultra Commerce, to launch a new enterprise-grade payment platform for sales of Founders First craft brewery and distillery products. The MSA is supported by a Strategic Collaboration Agreement (SCA) between Amazon Web Services and Ultra Commerce announced in 2019 to deploy its e-commerce platform in the cloud, and provide go-to-market support to scale. The Ultra Commerce platform is designed to enable Founders First to launch their digital commerce initiatives to extend the reach of the company’s brands both in Australia and overseas. The cloud-based solution is highly scalable to support the Founders First business today and for future growth.By leveraging AWS, Ultra Commerce has accelerated Founders First’s deployment of the new digital platform and takes advantage of the broad functionality of cloud services needed to provide their customers an outstanding digital experience.Mark Haysman, Founders First’s Chief Executive and Managing Director says “The use of digital technologies helps us to unlock value for our customers and our brand partners, and is a high priority on our growth agenda. By leveraging the scalability of AWS, we have the opportunity to further support and scale to meet the needs of more craft businesses in our network, to grow quickly, and to deliver on our customers needs. Our collaboration with Ultra Commerce is a really positive endorsement of our business model and our digital strategy.“To view the full announcement, read here.

2020.07.17, 3 min read

New $3 Million Masterplan Unveiled For Kangaroo Island

Founders First Ltd has unveiled a $3 million masterplan development for Kangaroo Island Distillery (KID) which will see it become a world-class distillery and a must-see tourism destination for Kangaroo Island from Spring 2021. Home to the global award-winning Kangaroo Island Spirits (KIS), and located in Cygnet River, the new development will give people a unique and immersive experience that will attract increased tourism visitation to the island and drive growth in the domestic and international visitor economy. The project will create 20 jobs during construction and around 25 ongoing jobs for the region once completed. The development will be completed in two stages, starting with the construction of a world-class distillery. A third still will be added to increase the production capacity for the domestic and export market of the award-winning gin, vodka, and the soon to be released single malt whisky, the first to be made on Kangaroo Island. The new distillery will include a spirit tasting room and education space, which will overlook production and allow for captivating brand experiences like masterclasses, group tastings, and events. The existing cellar door will also be upgraded to focus on serving visitors KIS spirits and cocktails in the native botanical garden that is home to over 75 native species used in the making of the botanical driven gins including Native Juniper, Coastal Daisy Bush, Anise Myrtle, and Lemon Myrtle. Founded by Jon and Sarah Lark, KIS is proudly one of Australia’s most awarded gin brands and the first dedicated gin distillery in the country. In March this year, they were acquired by Founders First, industry leaders in supporting and growing independent craft brewery and distillery businesses. Founders First CEO Mark Haysman said Kangaroo Island is internationally famous for its wilderness, wildlife, and world-class food and beverage industry. The development of KID will give visitors an immersive experience that will be truly something special and ensure we continue to meet strong local and global demand we are seeing for premium gin and spirit products. “We are thrilled that Jon and Sarah will both continue as Chief Distillers and Brand Ambassadors, as they continue to innovate with new products - we are especially excited about the release of the island’s first whisky made using local malt and aged in port barrels, it will be available on very limited release later in the year. “We also have recently shipped over 120 cases of KIS Wild Gin and O’Gin to the emerging markets of Japan and Singapore and are looking to Europe where KIS O’Gin recently won the Contemporary Style Gin Trophy at the International Wine and Spirits Competition in London – the only Australian brand to do so in its 50-year history.” Jon Lark is looking forward to the new development, “It will add to the brand offering we have built over the past 15 years and will improve our ability to make our beautiful products, it will also enable us to welcome more visitors to experience our island hospitality.” Sarah Lark continued, “This will enable us to offer more educational and interactive experiences, people will be able to have the opportunity to learn the art of gin making and creating cocktails from our KIS range in the new space.” Kangaroo Island Tourism Food Wine and Beverage Association Chairman Pierre Gregor said this is great news for KI. “It is a great initiative that value adds to the visitor experience, enhances the exposure of local produce and provides a multi-purpose facility which will be available for visitors and residents alike. It is reassuring to see this commitment to and investment in Kangaroo Island which will also lead to greater production, increased export capability, and employment outcomes.” The second stage of the masterplan will introduce a commercial kitchen and potential plan for accomodation to cater for the overnight market. To view the full media release, click here. The amazing range of award-winning KIS products are available for home delivery on there website. Shop here. .responsive { width: 100%; max-width: 800px; height: auto; }

2020.07.03, 1 min read

Sparkke Awarded South Australia’s Top Award for Commercial Architecture

Founders First partner, Sparkke has won two awards for their brewpub Sparkke at the Whitmore at the AIA’s South Australian Architecture Awards. Designed by Troppo Architects the venue won the heritage architecture award for restoring the historic pub dating all the way back to 1851, just 15 years after Adelaide’s founding. During the restoration of the former brothel, many features were uncovered including a well that was covered with a porthole and exposed timber roof shingles. The brewpub also features a beer garden, rooftop bar, bottle shop and restaurant. The pub has multiple spaces with the kitchen and brewery located in the center and is filled with light. The recently opened rooftop terrace over looks the iconic Whitmore Square. AIA Juror Kirsteen MacKay said, "You’re looking right across the tree canopy of the square. You can see the hills and beyond. It might be modest in scale, but it’s a fantastic outcome.” Sparkke, being a social enterprise are helping to breathe new life into Whitmore Square, as the south-west of the city is seeing a positive shift and is no longer a place to avoid. ' It’s great to see Sparkke getting recognition for the incredible space they have created. We’re excited for what the future holds for this brand and we’re looking forward to what they bring to Sparkke at The Vine in Melbourne’s Collingwood. For a more detailed write up, read The Australian Financial Review story here. .responsive { width: 100%; max-width: 800px; height: auto; }

2020.07.29, 2 min read

A Good Beer Always Helps Case Hits Shelves in Dan Murphy’s and BWS Nationwide

The 'A Good Beer Always Helps’ campaign case will be on sale in over 1000 BWS and Dan Murphy’s stores from Friday 26 June, with a portion of the proceeds from each case going to support the campaign. The Good Beer Co’s Founder James Grugeon said he was excited that Founders First, BWS, Dan Murphy’s and oOh!media have joined the already successful campaign to help thank Aussie essential workers. Thanks to the additional support, The Good Beer Co and all sixteen breweries featured in the case will gift 10,000 essential workers a 4 pack of beer. The independent craft collection features sixteen breweries including the campaign’s eight foundation partners: Newstead Brewing Co, Sparkke, Modus Operandi, Capital Brewing Co, Stomping Ground Brewing Co, Moo Brew, Van Dieman, and non-alcoholic craft beer company Sobah. It also includes beers from the Founders First portfolio: Ballistic, Slipstream, Sauce, Foghorn and Jetty Road, as well as Beer Farm, Bright and Stone and Wood. Founders First CEO Mark Haysman said, “Our focus is on supporting the craft industry, so being able to partner with The Good Beer Co in a program that supports craft breweries and essential workers was a no brainer. To have been able to cement the participation of Dan Murphy’s and BWS was a real win for the breweries and our essential workers. Support from the Woolworth team has been phenomenal.” Leading Out of Home company oOh!media supported the gratitude messaging of the campaign, generously donating over $1.5 million of media space to thank essential workers. The ‘Beer - it’s Australian For Thank You’ creative is now on 30 digital billboards across the country. Limited edition 'A Good Beer Always Helps' cases are available exclusively at Dan Murphy’s and BWS. The 16 pack will be stocked in over 1000 stores across the country. RRP: from $62. Read the full media release here.

2020.06.26, 1 min read

Founders First Doubles Craft Beer Distribution in National Retailers for FY21

Success comes to Founders First as annual range reviews for national retailers are completed, +2000 distribution points across national Australian retailers have been secured.Total pack beer distribution points across the portfolio will increase from August after Founders First secured additional distribution through Coles (Liquorland, First Choice Liquor and Vintage Cellars) and Woolworths (Dan Murphy’s and BWS).“These results reflect both the quality of our portfolio of craft beer products and the unique capability that the FFL sales team (Indie Craft Collective) brings to the table. We expect distribution gains to be balanced across all channels once the outcomes in the Independent channel and On-premise are finalised. We are very pleased with the outcome and excited for our brand partners.” Mr Haysman said.Six new products to hit the shelves of the National Retailers from August will be (ranging will vary by banner/state):Jetty Road XPABallistic Hawaiian HazeSlipstream Pale AleSparkke Red AleSauce Peach Berliner WeisseSauce Hop Sauce Pale AleNew Pack Innovation (again ranging will vary by banner/state):Ballistic Hawaiian Haze 16pksSlipstream Pale Ale 16pksThese ranging outcomes will be combined with a significant increase in marketing / brand investment across FY21 to ensure consumer pull through, brand awareness and sales growth are maximised for FY21.Find out more in our latest ASX announcement.

2020.06.19, 1 min read

Foghorn Brewery Can King Street Pale

Joining Foghorn’s outstanding range of canned beers is the King Street Pale Ale, a quality craft session ale named after Foghorn’s Brewery on King Street, in the heart of Newcastle. King Street Pale Ale has been road-tested over a long period of time in the brewhouse and enjoyed by customers so much so, it has become one of the breweries most popular beers on tap. The inspiration for the beer stems from Foghorn Brewery Founder Shaun Sherlock’s constant search for sessionability and drinkability without compromising flavour or originality, “we wanted something really approachable that wouldn’t build up too much on the palate if you were having a couple, but that still didn’t just taste like every other pale ale on the market. It is distinctively different” says Shawn. “We’ve got a big in your face IPA and Stout in the cans and a really nice hop driven pale ale in the Newy – there was room for something different and the King Street Pale fits that bill nicely.” The cans will be available locally in Newcastle and in the yet to be released, ‘A Good Beer Always Helps’ cases which will be sold exclusively through Dan Murphy’s and BWS stores nationwide. The King Street Pale is Foghorns go to session beer of choice. The pale is comfortable in its own skin, full of flavour, with just enough hop and crisp balancing malt. Not too heavy, not too light. Quietly confident. Peak drinkability. ABV is 4.7%.

2020.06.12, 1 min read

World Gin Day with Founders First

World Gin Day which is tomorrow, is the celebration of all things gin. We are proud of our incredible, award-winning craft gins by Kangaroo Island Spirits, Brogan’s Way & Green Ant Gin. Kangaroo Island Spirits, operated by award-winning makers Jon and Sarah Lark have collaborated with local KI winery The Islander Estate Vineyard on a limited edition gin to be launched this World Gin Day - The Wally Wild - in support of the cleanup of the recent devastating Kangaroo Island bushfires. / The limited-edition Wally Wild Gin has brought together two of the best makers on Kangaroo Island. The Islander Estate Vineyards Wally White is a highly sought-after Semillon fermented in a 600L French oak demi-muid creating a complex and elegant wine. By ageing KIS signature Wild Gin in these barrels for 12 months they have combined the warming notes of honey and musk with the crisp, spicy notes of gingerbread. KIS are also connecting with customers with a virtual gin tasting event with the event being so popular, a second session throughout the day was been introduced. Customers were sent a gin tasting pack ahead of tomorrow’s event. Lastly, KIS have 10% off storewide when you use the code WORLDGINDAY ending soon, so shop now! Brogan’s Way have released an exclusive limited edition, Passionfruit Husk Gin for tomorrow’s celebrations. There have only been 400 bottles produced so if you want to buy, you’ll need to get in quick! The gin is juniper lead and with fresh citrus on the palate and full aromas of passionfruit and lavender. Launched on International Women’s Day was Sparkke at the Whitmore X Brogan’s Way Women’s Work Gin. Harvested by Indigenous-led SA based company Red Centre. The money Sparkke paid for these ingredients will go back to the communities to reinvest in developing a productive, sustainable native produce business. Available to purchase here and here. Green Ant Gin is an award-winning Australian gin that celebrates native ingredients harvested from the remote top end of Australia to create flavours unlike anything else on the market. Developed by Daniel Motlop, an indigenous food entrepreneur, Green Ant gin is the first spirit from his sustainable family business - one that passes down the knowledge of positive Aboriginal culture to share the world’s oldest newest flavours with you. Celebrate World Gin Day with a bottle, available here. * { box-sizing: border-box; } .column { float: left; width: 33.33%; padding: 5px; } /* Clearfix (clear floats) */ .row::after { content: ""; clear: both; display: table; }

2020.06.05, 1 min read

Founder First Brisbane based brewery Ballistic have released a fresh look and taste beer

With a new look, tweaked recipes and renewed marketing messages to drive the Ballistic brand out of the current COVID-19 impacted environment and into the traditional beer buying periods of summer and Christmas. “While the objective of the refresh was not to change prices, we didn’t feel we could reduce the alcohol percentage and save on excise without passing this saving onto our wholesale and retail customers.” said Ballistic Beer Co CEO David Kitchen. Ballistics’ refresh was consumer led, with focus groups and online surveys conducted in the initial stages to help identify the direction of change. The can refresh means the designs are lighter, brighter and better reflect the personality of the updated beers so consumers can see the beers on the shelf and easily identify the style of each can. Founders First sales team, The Indie Craft Collective have executed the relaunch brilliantly so far, with the new cans hitting shelves on Monday June 1st. The new and improved beers have been very well received by retailers and consumers. Consumers can find Ballistic Beer Co. beers in pubs and bars, independent bottleshops, major chain bottleshops and Ballistic’s own breweries and bars. ABOUT BALLISTIC BEER CO. The Salisbury-based craft beer brewery was founded in 2016. In 2018, Ballistic opened its first off-site bar, Ballistic Alehouse and Kitchen in West End, and its Springfield Brewery, Alehouse and Kitchen opened in October 2019, with a brewery incorporated into the Alehouse. In early 2020, Ballistic won Champion Large Brewery at the Royal Queensland Show Beer.

2020.06.04, 1 min read

Jetty Road and KI Spirits Open for the June Long Weekend!

Founders First are proud to announce that two of their venues are reopening in time for the long weekend. Kangaroo Island Spirits in the popular South Australian holiday spot and Jetty Road Brewery on the Mornington Peninsula. Jetty Road will be serving their delicious food and as a way of Jetty Road saying thanks to their customers for sticking by them through the tough times, the first beer will be on them! Bookings are essential to secure your 2-hour sitting inclusive of a 2-course meal and first beer on the brewer. Included in their offering, will be their sold-out Milk Choc Stout – the perfect winter warmer! All the other beers known and loved by Jetty Road will also be available. For opening times and bookings click here. Kangaroo Island Spirits will be serving their gins all weekend for those travelling to the island for a long weekend getaway. KIS will be opened from today, 7 days a week, 10am-5pm. Whilst tastings will not be available, they have a delicious range of cocktails and G&Ts to be enjoyed in their garden. All reservations are for one hour and can be made via their website https://kispirits.com.au/experience/. Bookings are easy simply select ‘KIS GIN GARDEN BOOKING’ along with your preferred time and number of guests. * { box-sizing: border-box; } .column { float: left; width: 33.33%; padding: 5px; } /* Clearfix (clear floats) */ .row::after { content: ""; clear: both; display: table; } It is great to see our venues are finally able to get back to a sense of normality after a tough couple of months!

2020.05.29, 1 min read

Founders First award winning Adelaide brewpub Sparkke at the Whitmore re-opens Today

As restrictions for COVID-19 continue to ease and restaurants, cafes and bars re-open their doors. Sparkke at the Whitmore’s award-winning fare restaurant today opens its doors with a brand-new menu to welcome people back. The menu has been carefully curated by Head Chef Emma McCaskill who says it is about building Fare, it’s been asleep and now it is alive! “We have some of our dishes that are customer favourites like our dumplings and broccolini but we have spent 11 weeks strategically working on this new menu and waiting to open.” “Sustainability remains at the core of Fare’s kitchen, allowing the team to close the loop and look at food holistically by refining systems to minimise waste. Emma’s ethos aims to showcase the incredible local producers Sparkke works with.” “I am very passionate about sourcing high quality local produce, and we continue to work closely with farmers to create our menu,” Emma continued. Sparkke are also showing their appreciation by shouting a beer to all loyal customers. Sparkke’s entire range of craft beverages will be available on tap including their award-winning apple cider and specialties; Sparkke Red Ale, Pink Lemonade, Desert Lime Draught, Dark Lager and Black IPA. It is exciting to see our venues being able to open their doors back up to the public, get employees back to work and sharing their love for craft alcohol and fantastic food with the community. This weekend Sparkke will be open for lunch only from Friday through to Sunday. From next week, they will be open Wednesday to Friday for lunch and dinner. Booking are essential. www.sparkke.com * { box-sizing: border-box; } .column { float: left; width: 33.33%; padding: 5px; } /* Clearfix (clear floats) */ .row::after { content: ""; clear: both; display: table; }

2020.05.20, 1 min read

The ultimate pub experience: Thursday Night Knock Offs

Beginning Thursday 21 May, music and craft beer lovers can support their favourite local brewers, bands and musicians with the exciting new weekly music event, Thursday Night Knock Offs. Thursday Night Knock Offs is presented by Founders First in conjunction with the newly released Indie Craft Knock Offs Pack which are 16 craft beers from breweries across Australia selected by Cicerone Tiffany Waldron and on sale in Liquorland, First Choice or Vintage Cellars stores across the country. The gigs will hosted on the rooftop of Adelaide’s Sparkke at The Whitmore’s and presented via Facebook Live, the ultimate way to experience the pub at home. The line-up of artists will showcase some amazing Australian female bands and solo artists which Founders is excited to play a role in showcasing. Founders First’s Director of Venues and Hospitality Ash Cranston said, “Going to the pub to catch your mates and favourite band in the front bar with a local craft beer in your hand is one of the great Aussie traditions.” “Unfortunately, we haven’t been able to do this of late, and local musicians, bands and craft breweries have been affected. We want to bring back this experience with Thursday Night Knock Offs to support some of our great music, brewing talents and pub culture.” Premiering this Thursday, the 21st of May, Thursday Night Knock Offs line-up is as follows: Thursday 21st May: Alana Jagt. Thursday 28th May: The Boys Club Thursday 4th June : The Eileens Thursday 11th June: George Alice Performances will be streamed on Facebook every Thursday evening from 6pm on the Sparkke Change Beverage Company Facebook and shared by all 16 breweries through their social channels. * { box-sizing: border-box; } .column { float: left; width: 33.33%; padding: 5px; } /* Clearfix (clear floats) */ .row::after { content: ""; clear: both; display: table; }

2020.05.18, 2 min read

Support Australian Brewers With Local Indie Craft Knock Offs

Founders First sales arm, Indie Craft Collective, have partnered with Liquorland, Vintage Cellars and First Choice Liquor to exclusively sell a limited edition, Independent Craft beer pack. The pack is a great way for beer lovers to support small, craft brewers, with 16 craft beers from 16 brewers across the country. After thousands of pubs, venues and small bars across the country temporarily shut doors in March, they need help. Chief Executive and Managing Director Mark Haysman said, “This case allows us to showcase the work of well-known breweries featuring alongside newer, emerging smaller brands which we are helping to accelerate. “By producing the Knock Offs case, we are supporting the craft beer industry during this period of uncertainty. We are doing it for the love of craft, so our community thrives, it’s just the first of a number of new initiatives that will be rolled out in coming months.” The case’s 16 local craft beers have been hand-picked by Cicerone Tiffany Waldron, who selected a cross-section of independent beers from craft brands such as Jetty Road, Sparkke, Sauce, Young Henry’s, Slipstream, Beerfarm and Colonial. “The pack is a craft beer lovers’ smorgasbord with a mix of familiar beers like IPA and Pilsner alongside Sour and Berliner Weisse,” Tiffany said. Jetty Road Co-Founder Grant Rodgers said, “Initiatives like this are genuinely helping us keep our doors open, we all benefit when our industry stands together, and we’re grateful to Founders First, Liquorland, Vintage Cellars and First Choice Liquor for helping make Knock Offs a reality. It’s a really fun program and that helps keep us motivated and positive” Knock Offs are available exclusively at Liquorland, Vintage Cellars and First Choice Liquor. The 16 pack will be stocked in over 1000 stores across: Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia. RRP: from $60. Go visit your nearest retailer and show your support for the craft beer industry! Read the full media release here. * { box-sizing: border-box; } .column { float: left; width: 33.33%; padding: 5px; } /* Clearfix (clear floats) */ .row::after { content: ""; clear: both; display: table; }

2020.05.08, 1 min read

Brogan’s Way recognised as ‘One To Watch’

Founders First partner, Brogan’s Way has been recognised as ‘One to Watch’ at the Icons of Gin Awards in London earlier this year. The awards saw a range of Australian gin brands receive “top honours time and time again”, with thousands of gin distillers around the world. Distiller Brogan Carr has the science and growing list of awards fast growing a reputation as one of the youngest and most qualified in her field. Brogan’s approach to gin comes with a high level of chemistry and an edge with her mix of traditional and native ingredients. Carr says: “Australian native botanicals are an interesting and complex combination of flavours, which is evident from their chemical composition. My studies focused on the chemical and sensory analysis of some of the more popular Australian natives. Brogan’s Way has a number of accolades, some recent awards include: The Royal Blood Gin: awarded Gold at the Australian Distilled Spirits Awards 2019, and Silver at the recent 2019 San Francisco World Spirits Competition, The Everyday Salvation: Silver at the 2019 San Francisco World Spirits Competition and Bronze at the Australian Distilled Spirits and Australian Gin Awards. Brogan’s Way Evening Light: Bronze at the 2019 San Francisco World Spirits Competition, 2019 Australian Distilled Spirits Awards and Australian Gin Awards. We are excited to be part of Brogans Way’s journey. To view the full article, please read here. If you’d like to try some of her award winning gin you can purchase from the Brogan's Way online store.

2020.05.05, 1 min read

Packaging begins for Foghorn and Founders Momentum Hospital Grade Sanitiser

Founders First is proud to share the hard work the team at Foghorn Brewery in Newcastle and South Australian based, Founders Momentum have been doing since COVID-19 has forced businesses to look for new ways to adapt. The collaboration between the two companies to create hospital grade sanitiser, under the licence from The Giving Brands Co, has allowed Foghorn Brewery Head Brewer and CEO, Shawn Sherlock to get employees back to work. The premium sanitiser is 80% Ethanol which is 10-15% higher than the market standard and can be used both for hands and to keep surfaces within the workplace and home clean. With the urgent shortage of hand sanitiser and as restrictions slowly begin to ease, strict hygiene habits will remain essential. Businesses, schools, universities and sporting clubs will need continued access to high quality sanitiser. This project is a short-term opportunity providing a solution for both the community and Foghorn. Keeping staff employed is essential for mental health and well-being and crucial in retaining valuable employees for when businesses begin to operate as normal. Over the weekend, the team began bottling and packaging the sanitiser ready for deliveries across the country throughout May. The sanitiser is available in four different sizes for hands or in a spray bottle to sanitise surfaces. For a detailed list of sizes and prices click here. To place an order simply email Sanitiser@foundersfirst.com.au.

2019.11.18, 1 min read

Founders First invests in high growth emerging beverage category

Founders First today announced it has reached an agreement to invest in the fast emerging alcoholic kombucha category, partnering with the founders of Torquay based K.BOOCH. Alcoholic kombucha is a category that has high growth potential, given the significant expansion that has occurred within the US market. Founders First CEO, Mark Haysman, said he was excited by the prospect of partnering with K.BOOCH, as he sees great potential in the independent regional producer that is an early entrant into the emerging category. “Alcoholic kombucha is a category that has huge appeal to customers who are seeking an alternative to RTD’s, cider and wine,” he said. “K.BOOCH is a product that is perfectly positioned to meet the needs of those seeking a natural better for you product that is produced using traditional methods, and is low in sugar, calories, and alcohol (at 4% ABV). “Nick and Marlee have done an amazing job setting up their business. They experimented and applied some clever innovation to a product resulting in exceptional consumer experience. “Their hard work has already paid dividends, with the product ranged by some of Australia’s leading liquor retailers.” Alcoholic kombucha is targeted to younger consumers who are seeking naturally produced, better for you alternatives to mass-produced beverages. Mark said the K.BOOCH brand has a significant opportunity across all channels, on and off-premise, as well as outdoor on the go consumption occasions. Available in bottles, slimline cans, and kegs, investment by Founders First will allow K.BOOCH to accelerate brand awareness across Australia, boosting marketing investment to take advantage of the brands early market entry. - ends - Contact: Paul Zennaro paul@foundersfirst.group

2019.11.08, 1 min read

Founders First invests for growth in Asia

Founders First today announced it has acquired a 100% stake of Australian export business Momentum Food & Wine. Established in 2006, Momentum exports a range of products, including wine, through Asia, Europe and the Americas. With Momentum’s core capability in exporting , the business is only one of 300 companies to be accredited as an Australian Trusted Trader, which status has a number of benefits including a streamlined customs process for exporting products. Founders First CEO Mark Haysman said “growing exports for partner brands within its portfolio is an important component of their partners growth plan and Momentum has the existing relationships in key export markets to make this happen. “There is a growing demand for premium Australian products abroad, and this acquisition means we have an established pathway into priority markets, including China “ Mark said “As Founders First extends its portfolio of craft beer, spirits and emerging craft beverage partners, there is a clear opportunity to grow by taking these premium craft brands to Asia and other key international beverage markets.” Momentum this year commenced distribution of craft beer brand, Jetty Road, to export markets and is currently exhibiting at the China International Import Expo in Shanghai as recently attended by Australia’s Minister for Trade, Simon Birmingham. - Ends - Contact: Paul Zennaro paul@foundersfirst.group .responsive { width: 100%; max-width: 800px; height: auto; }

2019.11.06, 1 min read

Founders First backs award winning Richmond female distiller

Craft beverage accelerator Founders First is pleased to announce it has reached an agreement with fast growing Richmond distiller, Brogans Way, in a move that will help connect its award winning gin with more people. Under the agreement, Founders First will invest in Brogans Way, while the Indie Craft Collective will sell the business’ gin products to venues and retailers across Australia. Founder of Brogan’s Way, Brogan Carr, said Founders First’s model of investing alongside distillery and brewery founders was appealing to her. “Starting a gin distillery has been my mission for three years,” Brogan said. “The Founders First model allows our team time to concentrate on what we love and do best, make a gin for every occasion and a venue where the community can come together and enjoy it. “The investment means we can spend more on the distillery, while Founders First can help with other professional services, including improvements in how we supply and sell gin to customers.” The Indie Craft Collective, operated by Founders First, is a sales team of experienced professionals spread across Australia. The Indie Craft Collective manages the sales of independent craft products including Brogan’s Way gin, and beer from Jetty Road on the Mornington Peninsula, Foghorn from Newcastle, Sauce in Marrickville and Ballistic from Brisbane. “Managing sales can be very challenging for small craft beverage producers, particularly if the objective is to bring the product to customers across Australia,” Brogan said. “Sharing a team of 14 dedicated sales people across a small but growing number of craft distillers and brewers enables us to spread costs over several independent businesses, while benefiting from a team that none of us could have assembled individually.” Located in the heart of Richmond, Brogans Way is a gin distillery and bar with a capacity of 120 people. The distillery produces a core range of five gins, plus seasonal blends, and are available online and from selected outlets. Founders First CEO Mark Haysman added “we are particularly excited to be partnering with Brogan and her father Simon (who is the MD of Brogans Way) – we believe that Brogan is a leader of the next generation of distillers, not just in Melbourne, but nationally. She is a very talented maker, and we are backing her to support making her dreams a reality. Oh, and her gin is world class, as evidenced by the recent awards she has collected, with the Royal Blood Gin awarded Gold at the Australian Distilled Spirits Awards 2019, and Silver at the recent 2019 San Francisco World Spirits Competition – an absolute credit to Brogan and her craft!” - Ends - Contact: Paul Zennaro paul@foundersfirst.group For more information check out this brochure or visit Brogan's website. .responsive { width: 100%; max-width: 800px; height: auto; }

2019.11.01, 1 min read

Founders First is going Ballistic!

Ballistic Founders First today announced another new partnership with an exciting Australian craft brewery – Ballistic Beer Co based in the Brisbane suburb of Salisbury. Ballistic currently sells a range of canned beers and operates three exciting venues around Brisbane, two that brew beer on premises. As part of the partnership, Founder First’s Indie Craft Collective will take Ballistic products to customers across Australia, helping the brand expand out of its home market of Queensland, initially into Victoria and New South Wales. The partnership also provides an opportunity to joint venture for further expansion of Ballistic’s successful brewpub concept outside of Queensland. Founders First CEO, Mark Haysman, said the business was excited to add the Ballistic partnership to the company’s growing portfolio. “Ballistic is a brand that has proved incredibly popular with customers in Queensland, and we see huge potential in taking these quality beers to customers across the country”, Mark said. “Ballistic’s beers have big bold flavours, that have been a hit with customers. “But far from being a beer that only appeals to hardcore craft drinkers, they pride themselves as having a beer for every drinker. “Backed by the Indie Craft Collective’s growing national sales team, we are confident sales will grow as we take it to a much bigger audience of customers across Australia.” Ballistic is the fourth brewery to partner with Founders First, following on the back of similar partnerships with Jetty Road, Foghorn and Sauce. Today’s announcement follows the company’s two oversubscribed capital raisings for 2019, and continued the momentum as Founders First heads towards a prospective IPO. - ends - .responsive { width: 100%; max-width: 800px; height: auto; }

2019.10.24, 1 min read

Founders First get on The Sauce!

Founders First today announced a new partnership with the Marrickville based Sauce Brewing Co. The partnership will see Founders First join forces with Sauce, and its founder Mike Clarke, to establish a brewpub in Cairns far north Queensland. The seven day a week venue, will include on onsite brewhouse that will produce the popular range of Sauce beers, along with a range of local specials that will be unique to that venue. Under the agreement, Founders First’s Sales Collective will represent the Sauce brand for national sales, adding the popular Sydney based brand to the portfolio of independent brands that includes Jetty Road from Mornington Peninsula and Foghorn from Newcastle. Founders First CEO, Mark Haysman, said he was excited to add the Sauce partnership to Founders First’s growing portfolio. “Sauce has built a strong following in Sydney’s inner west, where the brewhouse and packaged products were proving very popular with customers in one of the country’s most vibrant craft beer regions”, Mark said. “This partnership will see the brewpub model taken to Australia’s northern market, and the Sales Collective will take on the existing Sauce sales team. “Sauce is a brand that exudes authenticity, and the beers have won a number of national awards. We are confident sales will grow as we take it to a much bigger audience of potential customers.” Coming on the back of the company’s second oversubscribed capital raising for 2019, this latest announcement continued the strong momentum as Founders First heads towards a prospective IPO. .responsive { width: 100%; max-width: 800px; height: auto; }

2019.10.15, 1 min read

Founders First Media Release 15th October 2019

Investors rush in to be part of craft beverage acceleratorCraft beverage accelerator Founders First has completed its series B capital raising,its second for 2019, with the offer oversubscribed.The company was overwhelmed by interest from sophisticated investors both inAustralia and overseas.Initially seeking to raise $10 million, the series B offer closed with the boardaccepting $13 million of subscriptions, taking total capital raised in 2019 to more than$21 million.This oversubscribed capital raising follows the earlier series A round, where theboard accepted $8.5 million in subscriptions despite initially seeking to raise $5million.Capital raised in advance of the IPO will be used to build a team of industryprofessionals with deep experience in the Australian market, fuel the short-term growth of existing partners Jetty Road (Mornington Peninsula) and Foghorn(Newcastle), close out a number of new investments in craft beverage businessesand progress discussions on brewpub opportunities.Founders First CEO, Mark Haysman, said the second capital raising’s overwhelmingsuccess built strong momentum as the company heads towards a prospective IPO.“As a business we are focussed on the compelling offer we hope to take to market inthe near future,” Mark said.“The capital raised during 2019 has enabled us to identify a number of independentcraft beverage businesses that will benefit from partnering with us and ourinvestment will accelerate their growth.“We expect to make a number of announcements in coming months about strongindependent local businesses run by passionate people, who have welcomed ourinvestment to help them scale and grow.”Mark said the reaction from overseas investors was particularly pleasing, withinvestment coming from investors in Hong Kong and London.“Local investor support has again been excellent, and the overseas investment is astrong endorsement of our model in accelerating the growth of independent craft,and the potential scalability into markets beyond Australia in time,” he said.Founders First engaged Bell Potter Securities Limited to manage the series B capitalraising and to assist the company to prepare for its anticipated IPO.- ends -For further media information contact: Contact name – Paul Zennaro Email – paul@foundersfirst.group Phone number – 0409 528 616

2020.11.05, 1 min read

Shareholders approve name change to Mighty Craft Limited

Founders First Limited is pleased to announce that shareholders have approved a special resolution at its Annual General Meeting today which proposes to change the Company’s name to Mighty Craft. The Company’s Board believes changing the name of the Company will create greater alignment with its business strategy and reset and re‐establish market perceptions to better reflect the Company’s proposed future operations. CEO Mark Haysman said Mighty Craft was the Company’s industry facing identity and encapsulated the vision, purpose, and strategic direction of the business. “Our proposal to change our name to Mighty Craft positions the Company as a leader in the independent craft beverage sector and is a better representation of what the business stands for and what it is aiming to achieve. The management team has consulted across a broad range of stakeholders including employees, partners and customers and the feedback was consistent that Mighty Craft is the right choice to take the business forward,” he said. Following shareholder approval of the name change and amendments to its constitution reflecting the change today, the Company will lodge an application with ASIC to alter the details of the Company’s registration status to reflect this name change. This will be lodged on the 4th November The Company’s ASX code will change to MCL upon ASIC approval. Read the full announcement here