Arran Brewery sold to marketing group

From The Publican by Hamish Champ June 19 2008

New owner pledges to focus on the on-trade

Administrators to the Arran Brewery have sold the business to a Scottish-based marketing and business consultancy, Marketing Management Services International (MMSI).

Graham Martin of PricewaterhouseCoopers said the deal, details of which were not disclosed, was “an excellent result for the brewery and for the Isle of Arran.

“We wish MMSI and the workforce every success in growing the operations and in taking the brand to its full potential.”

Gerald Michaluk, founder and chief executive of MMSI, told he had heard about the brewery being put into administration on the radio and had been attracted to the business by the “great quality of the product and the brands”.

“Arran produces some really high quality traditional ales and we will be looking to extend the range by creating variations of existing beers,” he said.

Part of Arran’s problems had been its emphasis on bottling beers which had created a “road block” in capacity terms, Michaluk added.

In MMSI’s view the brewery had focused too much of it efforts on the off-trade, particularly supermarkets, at the expense of the on-trade, and this was something the new owners planned to re-dress.

“We very much want to expand sales into pubs and do this with cask and kegs,” Michaluk said, who added that MMSI’s brand marketing expertise would help achieve this goal.

He added that MMSI hoped to buy other small breweries in the future.

Arran Brewery was originally staffed by 11 people, but the administrators had made eight employees redundant during their time in charge of the business. However Michaluk said he was trying to re-hire them.

"They have great expertise which will prove invaluable," he said.

Arran Brewery turned over around £1m last year, producing beers such as Arran Blonde, Arran Dark and Arran Sunset.

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