Co-founder departs Newstead Brewing

Brisbane’s Newstead Brewing Company has today announced the departure of co-founder Michael Conrad as a director and shareholder.

In a statement posted to social media captioned ‘Today marks an historic shift in the corporate providence [sic] of Newstead Brewing Co.’

Newstead CEO Dr Mark Howes said that his and Conrad’s vision for the brewery had grown apart.

“Six and a half years ago, Newstead Brewing Co was conceived in the Howes family household. The same house where Peter and Heather Howes created their small business in 1982,” Howes’ post said.

“Mum and Dad, while being generous to a fault, also provided Michael Conrad with an incredible opportunity to come onboard as a director and shareholder.

“Over the years, Michael’s vision for Newstead grew apart from my own to a point where we both agreed his involvement in Newstead was no longer tenable. I would also like to take this opportunity to reaffirm Newstead’s outward looking focus in the promotion of community and good beer.

“Michael Conrad has officially stepped down as a director and shareholder of Newstead Brewing Co and is no longer an employee.”

Conrad co-founded the business with a background in hospitality, having opened signature Brisbane restaurants Two Small Rooms in 1989 and Restaurant Two in 1999, and with a 35-year career in hospitality.

In 2013, Howes, who said he’d long wanted to open a beer venue, credited Conrad with having the vision for the brewpub concept.

Conrad’s departure leaves Newstead a “100% family owned and operated” brewery with Howes and his parents, Peter and Heather, as the owners.

Howes parents founded analytics and workforce planning software company Inform Business Impact in 1982. In 2010 the business was acquired by SuccessFactors for a reported US$40.5 million.

Conrad could not be reached for comment.

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