The Business Class

The Business Class: BrewDog

Episode Five: BrewDog

In Episode Five we profile rebellious craft beer and bar company BrewDog ( whose alternative marketing message and brand values have already seen them clash with market leaders Diageo. Founders James Watt and Martin Dickie have grown their brand to gain a loyal following, and even pioneered 'Equity for Punks' – a financial model which is unique in the EU.

In this episode we explore BrewDog's alternative marketing message, as well as their international expansion plans and franchise model. We will also be discussing how to implement the most effective board when experiencing rapid growth. To debate these issues with James, our expert panel includes Lord Digby Jones, formerly of CBI and UKTI and Mark Angela, ex-CEO of Pizza Express and now with SSP.

The Founders

James Watt, co-founder of BrewDog is a law graduate, whose professional life began as captain of his father's Scottish fishing trawler. In 2007 James and co-founder Martin Dickie saw a gap in the UK drinks market for a craft brewery founded on non-traditional values and BrewDog was born. James steers BrewDog's alternative marketing campaigns including launching the world's most alcoholic beer, The End of History (55% ABV), encased in bottles made from road kill and a the first beer to be brewed under the sea.

Martin Dickie is James' business partner and is fully qualified master brewer, who is the driving force behind BrewDog's beer range. He frequently collaborates with other breweries such as Three Floyds, Stone and Mikkeller.

BrewDog- Vital Statistics

BrewDog produce a range of craft beers and are founded on 'punk' values which extend to their finance model 'Equity for Punks' which saw them become a PLC only two years after inception and sell shares online to 1300 of their customers. They have recently also expanded their brand to incorporate a national chain of bars.

Company Name: BrewDog

Turnover: £11.5M (projected with 2012)

Headquarters: Fraserburgh

Founded: 2007

Employees: 125

James' Checklist For Businesses £10M-£25M Turnover

  • Is the induction process sufficient to ensure maximised productivity for new staff? Is staff training sufficient, or could it be improved?
  • How effective is the business' website? What improvements could be made to ensure it is the best selling tool it can be?
  • Is the cash-flow streamlined or excessive? Is it full of 'nice to have' or 'need to have' items? Does the business successfully manage receipts/expenditure?
  • How recognisable is the brand and how solid are the brand values of the business?
  • Does the company optimise its usage of social media? Is it a crucial part of the marketing strategy?

Episode Highlights

  • Caan is one of the U.K.'s most successful and dynamic entrepreneurs as well as the guest presenter of "The Business Class."

The Business Class Extras


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