A Kent brewery has agreed to acquire the brands of the collapsed Somerset brewery Wild Beer Co, saving a number of jobs.

Curious Brewery, based in Ashford said the agreement would double the size of its current operation.

Wild Beer Co fell into administration in December after fronting what it defined as “adverse trading conditions”, including the epidemic, rising inflation, the forfeiture of export sales and spiralling production costs.

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It was acquired by the private equity firm Risk Capital Partners in 2021 as part of a carve-out from winery Chapel Down,

Friends Andrew Cooper and Brett Ellis, who also ran a taproom called Wild Beer at Bristol’s Wapping Wharf, founded the company in 2012.

The administration agreement concerns Wild Beer Co’s beer, brands, and intellectual property, which Curious has purchased.

The agreement does not include the taproom in Bristol, but five employees will be transferred to Curious Brewery.

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It is unclear what will happen to the company’s Somerset brewery.

As part of the agreement, Curious Brewery has stated that it plans to honour the memberships and ongoing savings offered to current Secret Cellar Club members of Wild Beer Co. and former stockholders.

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. “

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Curious beers are brewed in Kent, where the business presently has a production capacity of five million pints per year. Its site in the county also comprises a visitor centre, tap room and a 120-cover bar-restaurant.

Mr. Crowther said: “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,”

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“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.”

Source: Business Live

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