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Craft Breweries: Where They Are Growing And What It Takes To Start

Every beer drinker may enjoy sitting down at home with a Budweiser after a long day at work, but when Americans go out to drink, these brand name beers often get left in the dark. The original craft beer industry is officially booming, and many beer drinkers enjoy the local flavors of new breweries. Here are a few of the most popular cities for craft breweries, and some insight on what it takes to get started.

Secure Financing for Your Microbrewery Business with Shield Funding

Craft Beer at the Taedonggang Microbrewery (image: CC BY SA 2.0 by Uri Tours via Wikimedia Commons)

Portland, Oregon – If you are a small business owner in Portland, Oregon, you may want to think about starting a hip restaurant with craft beer. The hipsters of Oregon are not only into philosophy and fine food, but they are also into beer. If you can come up with a delicious microbrew, you’re bound to have success in Oregon.

Seattle – Just 3 hours north of Portland, Seattle is also one of the best cities to grab a local brew. Some of the local best breweries currently include Pyramid, Maritime Pacific Brewing, and Fremont Brewing, but the industry is so popular and it’s begging for more growth.

Denver – Denver may be the home of Coors, but it’s also the home of many excellent local breweries. Denver is definitely a beer city, and there is always room for more fine local beers.

Portland, Maine – Apparently any city in the US with the name Portland is a thriving craft beer city. If you aren’t located on the west coast, but are still interested in starting a brewery, consider this fancy New England city, as beer is on the rise.

Kansas City, MO – Kansas City, MO is home to one of the 10th largest craft brewing companies—Boulevard Brewing Co. People travel from far and wide to try their so called sour ale, but they also offer additional local flavories including ginger, raspberry, and more. Like the other cities listed above, Kansas City is a great place to start a brewery.

Starting a Microbrewery

These are just some of the most popular cities where the popularity of local breweries is on the rise. That doesn’t mean they are the only cities that enjoy fine crafted beer. You may have the perfect ale and the perfect city in mind for your new small business, but you also may be wondering what it actually takes to start a brewery, especially in terms of financing. Consider the following tips as you work toward your dreams of starting your brewery.

  1. Get advice from others who have started. One of the best places to start is by reaching out to other brewery owners. Try reaching out to Boxcar Brewing Co; they’re used to it.
  2. Be prepared to finance your small brewery. The amount of money it takes to start a brewery can vary depending on where you start your company, and how much money you have to begin with, but Craftbrewingbusiness.com offers some excellent insight. They say to calculate how much you need, and then apply for 30% more to have a “30 percent topper.” This means if you need a million dollars to start out, apply for a small business loan of 1,300,000. That way you will have an extra buffer in case you need it.
  3. Understand distribution laws. Liquor distribution and general laws vary from state to state, so make sure you know what you are getting into before you start writing a business plan.
  4. Plan and paperwork. Once you know you can get a small business loan, and understand all the laws, it’s time to follow through with your plan and do all the paper work. This can take a lot of time, so make sure you have a lawyer, an accountant, and an office manager to help you.

Microbrewery Financing

Funding is available to launch your own local microbrewery. See our newest feature program for craft brewery financing with Shield Funding. We are interested in all business ideas and want to hear your business plan. Be in touch with us to receive more information about our small business loans for breweries.