Brian Koch is the owner of North Portland’s Lombard House pub, and like many others he is grappling with a pandemic, a pivot to delivery, and worldwide protests of an unjust system that have implications far more important than beer and bars.
The 6 year-old San Diego, California-based Modern Times Beer Co. has announced an opportunity for fans to become investors/ co-owners in the brewery. Already 30% employee owned, Modern Times is one of the fastest growing breweries in the country with five taprooms, one of which is the year-old Belmont Fermentorium in Portland and 3 new spots in the works.
“We’ve reached a scale that requires a new approach, and—rather than involve traditional private equity or other large investors—we’re choosing to give our fans a chance to invest in the company that they’ve done so much to help build,” says the company in a media release.
Modern Times reports a production of nearly 68,000 barrels and revenue of $30.5M in 2018, with $37M projected for 2019. Modern Times We Funder campaign for fan equity opens to the public at 8pm EST on April 22nd.
More from a press release:
We’re super excited about crowd equity, for a couple reasons. Firstly, we can’t think of a better long-term, sustainable business model than a brewery owned by its employees and fans, both of whom already play critical roles in shaping our beer, coffee, and company culture. Giving our fans—who already champion the brewery, frequent its establishments, and cheerlead its efforts—a chance to share in the potential upside of the company’s success seems like both a rad thing to do and a chance to have the most pro-active, engaged investor group on the planet.
Given our current structure, it’s also important to note that this new equity raise will actually accelerate our progress toward an increased percentage of employee-ownership. We anticipate that the added capital and anticipated growth from the use of that capital will allow us to advance the timeline of buying back shares for our employee-owners, while simultaneously growing the company. We also project that it will make our beer, coffee, and food more delicious, more available, and allow us to unleash the full potential of our visual magicians in creating some eye-poppingly luxurious environments in which to serve them. In short: This isn’t even our final form.
As a first step in this project, we’re going to be launching what’s called a Regulation CF Raise on the WeFunder platform, potentially followed by a more substantial capital raise later this year. We can only accept up to $1,070,000 under Regulation CF, but we may accept additional funds under other securities law exemptions related to accredited investors. This initial opportunity for investment will go live at 8pm on 4/22/19 on our crowd-funding page at https://wefunder.com/moderntimesbeer. We are immensely excited for this next step, and hope that our fans and friends will join us on the next leg of this already-epic adventure.
That’s it for now. We’re beyond stoked to be a part of this new crowd-funded environment soon, and can’t wait to see where it takes us. This is going to be wild.
Founder of The New School and most frequent contributor Ezra Johnson-Greenough has worked in the craft beer industry for almost 10 years, doing everything from illustrating beer labels to bartending at renowned beer bars and breweries like Belmont Station, Apex, Laurelwood and Upright Brewing. He has also had a hand in creating events like the Portland Fruit Beer Festival, Portland Beer Week, and the Brewing up Cocktails series. He is available for freelance consultation in marketing, events, graphic design and branding.
I’m shocked that this is something that is legal/not regulated in this day in age. Are they providing any financial documents to potential uneducated investors? I haven’t seen any besides quotes on their revenue and costs (averages?). What are your plans for the future? Cashing everyone out? To allow uneducated beer fans to just click on a button willy nilly and invest seems unethical. I’m sounding like a hater here but hey, great for them, they are getting additional capital with 0 interest rate and setting their own valuation. You’re big boys and are doing fine, raise the money yourself…
Fri Apr 19, 2019 5:56 PM
The ignorance of the public about money, finance and investing is truly frightening.
I want to educate people about this issue…so I need you help! Go to my GoFundMe page and give generously!