Indian craft beer company Bira 91 has received $50 million in a funding round led by Belgian investment firm Sofina.
Bira 91 claims that the investment will allow the business to expand its production capacity five-fold in India over the next three years, increasing beer production to 2,000,000 barrels from the current capacity of 350,000 barrels per year.
The company says this will establish Bira 91 as one of the biggest players in the Indian premium beer market, while the investment will allow the company to enter new markets such as the US, Singapore and Thailand.
Bira 91 founder and CEO Ankur Jain said: “Bira 91 aspires to drive the global shift in beer towards more flavour and colour. The new capital allows us to think long-term and establish a leadership position in premium beer in India.
“We also expect to create a meaningful international business in South East Asia and the United States. We truly believe that Bira 91 is at the ground floor of a massive global opportunity.
“We are excited to bring on board a fund like Sofina, with origins in Belgian family capital and with a truly long-term horizon as we passionately execute towards our dream of creating a global leader in the space.
“The consistent and rock-solid support by Sequoia India and Abhay Pandey, over the last two years has been exemplary and we draw a lot of confidence from their belief in our team a third time too.”
Maxence Tombeur, head of Asia at Sofina added: “Sofina accumulated a long experience investing in consumer goods and brands over the last decades, with investments including Danone, Richemont, Bowers & Wilkins and M. Chapoutier.
“Sofina is now looking forward to partnering with Bira 91 on a journey to scale their footprint in India and beyond. With our Belgian roots, we believe there is a great chemistry between our organizations and are proud to back Bira 91 as they are building a leading brand in the underserved premium beer segment.
“We have been impressed by Ankur and the passion driving Bira 91’s management team. This investment is part of our strategy of being a long-term supporter of talented entrepreneurs and like-minded investors in growth markets.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2019
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