CrowdBrewed Brings Crowdfunding to Craft Beer Niche

Picture Courtesy of Grow Southwest

Picture Courtesy of Grow Southwest is a crowdfunding website for the niche market of craft beer, soon to become the premier location for craft beer-based crowdsourcing projects.

Founded by beer aficionado, Travis Benoit, and partner “Denver Beer Guy,” Mark Slattery, CrowdBrewed is going to support not only breweries, but also bottling plants, label makers, hops farms and any other company directly involved with craft beer.

CrowdBrewed’s first crowdsourcing project, Pig Skin Brewery, in Columbus, Ohio, is just under a week from completion. Within 14 days they will be launching two more projects and have a third starting in less than a month.

Crowdsourcing is already a game changer for small businesses and their investors, and it seems like every day someone finds a new way to innovate using this remarkable tool.

“Kickstarter is a great website, and they’re good people. But with all of the projects on that site, it’s easy for a brewery, or other craft beer-related projects to get lost. We only do craft beer-related projects and we are more selective about which projects we are going to get on the website,” said Benoit.

Benoit was student at the University of Vermont in the mid 90’s when craft beer was just becoming a big market.

“I never drank yellow beer, and I still don’t to this day,” he said.

But Benoit recognized that his beverage of choice was more than just a savory treat, it was also an industry on the rise. So he took on some beer-related projects and financially invested in others. The experience of investing in craft beer projects is what eventually led Benoit to the idea of crowdsourcing craft beer.

Slattery was an experienced Denver-based beer blogger who used his own crowdsourcing savvy to fund a cross-country beer tour for his blog, “Denver Beer Guy.” Slattery spent 15 months touring 200 breweries in an RV all through crowdsourcing.

“My partner is an expert at understanding the concept of drinking beer, really he just knows everything there is to know about beer,” said Benoit.


Another innovation that CrowdBrewed is bringing to the table is the first ever equity and debt-based crowdsourcing model – as soon as the new laws regarding crowdsourcing go into effect on September 23.

“On September 23 we will become the first and only crowdfunding website dedicated and focused on equity based crowdfunding,” said Benoit, and he plans on taking this idea international. “I’d like to be in Canada and the U.K., by December,” he said, with plans of expanding the equity-based model into South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand by the end of 2014.

CrowdBrewed is looking to conduct up to five reward-based projects per month, and up to two equity-based projects per month. The minimum amount for an equity-based project will range somewhere between $500,000 and $1 million, while reward-based funding will not have a minimum cap. The time frame for reward-based projects will be between 30 and 45 days and those based on equity will get a longer amount of time.

“This is about helping out the smaller brewers. Whether it’s a home brewer trying to take the next step into becoming a local microbrewery, or a microbrewery looking to expand into a larger market, we just want to be able to help fund peoples dreams,” said Benoit.

Source: Lauren Fach – Grow Southwest



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