Tuatara founder: sale no sell-out
The ‘‘magic’’ that is Tuatara will not be changing, DB Breweries boss says.
Managing director Andy Routley says the company will not ‘‘mess with a winning formula’’ and it will be business as usual.
His comments come after the beer giant announced it had bought Kapiti-based craft brewer Tuatara.
‘‘This is not a business that we’ve acquired to change the magic,’’ Routley said. ‘‘The magic is what has created and made Tuatara so special today. We are utterly opposed to breaking that magic recipe.
Tuatara founder and master brewer Carl Vasta said he remained committed to being part of Tuatara and its future.
‘‘We’re changing the shareholding, we’re not changing the recipe ... I don’t see it as a sell-out ... the Tuatara team is still intact and will remain intact for as long as it is possible. I’m still very happy.’’
Routley said DB planned to invest in the brand and make it stronger.
Their aim was to reach more consumers ‘‘than its ever reached before’’ - in New Zealand and globally, he said.
Tuatara had spent the past two years focusing on innovation and increasing brewing capacity to break into international markets.
Tuatara beer is currently exported to Australia, Scandinavia and the UK.
Routley said it was too early to say where new markets would be.
Neither party would say what the sale was worth, citing commercial sensitivity.
Deloitte Private partner Ian Fay said a lot of craft brewers had been growing fast, however, maintaining that growth was a ‘‘costly exercise’’.
The larger company provided greater sales distribution while the craft brewery retained the quality and reputation for the beer it made, Fay said.
‘‘It’s all about the quality of beer you make, not about who owns it and how big you are.’’
Tuatara, established in 2000 and based in Paraparaumu, has gone from a backyard operation, to one of the largest craft breweries in New Zealand. In 2016, it produced more than 2 million litres of beer.
Just hours after Tuatara’s announcement, Garage Project announced it was building a new brewery in Hawke’s Bay.
DB Breweries managing director Andy Routley, left, and Tuatara founder and master brewer Carl Vasta at Tuatara’s brewery in Paraparaumu.