A DRINKS firm has raised £2.5 million towards the creation of its own brewery by selling beer bonds.
Capital-based craft brewer Innis & Gunn has attracted more than 840 people to invest in the project in under two months.
The money will fund a state-of-the-art £3m facility with a bottling line and barrel store at a mystery location in Scotland.
And the appetite from investors has been so great that beer bosses have announced they will extend availability of their fixed-term mini-bond for an extra month until July 16 to meet demand.
The bond offers those investing upwards of £500 over four years a return of 7.25 per cent per year.
UK investors can also opt for the BeerBond which offers nine per cent gross interest rate per year, with the return taken in the form of BeerBucks, which can be redeemed against beer at the firm’s online shop.
Dougal Sharp, founder and chief executive of Innis & Gunn, said he had been “delighted” with the response and the levels of investment coming in.
He added: “We set out to raise £3m and we’re almost there. We always wanted this project to bring us closer to our fans and the wider craft beer community and it absolutely has – the feedback we have had has been phenomenal.
“Over the last week, we’ve seen surging levels of interest from a spread of investors and as a result have taken the decision to keep the mini-bond open for a further month.
“We’re learning as we go with the launch of this mini-bond and the mix of applicants has been of real interest to us – we’ve attracted more than 840 individuals, from Innis & Gunn ‘fan-vestors’ to well-seasoned investors, predominantly in Scotland and south England.
“Investment levels have ranged from the entry level £500 to over £100,000, which indicates we’re attracting an interesting cross-section of people.”
All successful applicants who applied prior to the original application deadline of 1pm yesterday won’t suffer any delay or loss of interest from the extension.
Since its foundation in 2003, Innis & Gunn has grown to become a successful international business with an annual turnover of £11.8m in 2014 – up from £10.5m in 2013.
Last year, the firm sold more than 20 million bottles of beer and is the second biggest supplier of craft beer to the UK off-trade.
Exports made up 71 per cent of turnover last year and the brand is now the most popular bottled import into Sweden, and the most popular bottled British beer in Canada.
Bosses are in negotiations to buy a piece of land in south-east Scotland, fuelling speculation that the brewery may be based in the Lothians.
The company was unable to confirm a timescale or rough area but revealed that it is expected to create 35 additional jobs over the next four years.