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Craft Brewery raises near half a million euros through an equity-based crowdfunding

DBR Staff Writer Published 09 May 2014

Sori Brewing, a Finnish-Estonian craft brewery hits records by raising over $620 000 (451 700€) through an equity-based crowdfunding. Campaign raised over 150 000 EUR during the last 24 hours alone.

What makes Sori Brewing's case special, is that it raised equity for the initial investment. Sori executed the campaign on its own and didn't use any existing crowdfunding platforms. Breweries have raised equity through crowdfunding campaigns before, but they all have been established companies with ongoing production. "Crowdfunding is a great way to democratize your company and it fits well to the craft beer ideology. Financing is not only for the business sharks and banks anymore.", states Sori Brewing CEO Pyry Hurula. The best known example in brewery equity crowdfunding is the Scottish brewery, BrewDog. Sori Brewing brewery is scheduled to be operational by the end of this year.

Founded by three students in their twenties

Sori Brewing was founded by three Finnish university students from business and microbiology backgrounds. However, they are building the brewery in the neighbour country Estonia. The reason behind this is that Finland has the highest beer taxes and one of the strictest brewery regulations in Europe.
For instance, breweries aren't allowed to sell beer on premises and beer over 4.7% alc. is allowed to sell only in the government owned alcohol monopoly stores. Therefore, the young brewers decided to vote with their feet and to build the brewery on the other side of the Baltic Sea, in Estonia.

Finns seem to like the rebel attitude as well, since the crowdfunding campaign has been one of the most successful in craft beer industry. Sori Brewing claims their mission is to brew 'serious beer for not so serious people'. The brewery promises to produce world class craft beer for the beer connoisseurs, new triers and people who are bored with the ordinary bulky lager, that the Scandinavians are used to consume.

Mentored by professionals

In addition to equity, the young entrepreneurs have been able to find experienced business professionals to support them in the background. The Advisory Board is formed by four managing directors from different fields of business: a big Finnish-Estonian retail chain, a craft beer restaurant chain, a building supply manufacturing company and a consulting company specialized in customer satisfaction improvement.

Beers sold out

This far Sori Brewing has brewed their beers in local Finnish breweries and sold them in Finnish craft beer restaurants. The demand has exceeded the expectations and all batches have been sold out in less than a week. The first Sori products have been inspired by the crowdfunding campaign and named such as Investor IPA, Investor Porter and Investor Double IPA.
Brewery states that the IPA madness is taken over the Nordics, too.

Source: Company Press Release