Lion buys NZ's Harrington's


Kirin-owned Lion has purchased another brewery, with New Zealand brewery Harrington’s the latest to join the pride.

In a letter to suppliers Harrington’s General Manager Nick Cooke announced that the Christchurch brewery reached an agreement for Harrington’s Breweries to join the Lion family.

“We started Harrington’s back in ‘91 and the market is now in a very different place. We’ve been thinking for a while now about how best to carry the business into the future and reached out to Lion to see if they’d be interested in taking us under their wing. We’re so happy they’ve taken us up on their offer,” the letter said.

“By becoming part of the Lion business, Harrington’s can protect its legacy for the future whilst having the investment, expertise and networks behind it to deliver sustained growth in the market and get our great beers out to more people.”

The letter advised the parties are still working through the details but the brewery will stay in Christchurch and founder John Harrington will be staying on as the brand’s ambassador.

In a media release from Harrington’s, founder John Harrington said he had reached out to Lion about the purchase.

“I’ve had a relationship with Lion since my publican days and it’s always been a dream of ours that one day they’d become Harrington’s steward. They have a strong track record of protecting and growing craft beer brands and we’re confident that the work we’ve done in creating a strong legacy, will be protected, and even strengthened, by this move.”
“Lion will give Harrington’s the support needed to deliver sustained growth and give more people the chance to try our great beers.”

Lion New Zealand Managing Director said Lionn was proud to have been approached by Harrington’s.

“Harrington’s has such a rich and proud history and will be a fantastic complement to our existing range, with beers like Rogue Hop, Wobbly Boot and Ngahere Gold. We will build on what has made Harrington’s so great and help make their beers more accessible to people across the country,” Glass told the site.

Lion announced it plans to invest NZ$2 million updating the Christchurch brewery following the sale “to reinvigorate the business and improve brewing processes”.

The sale sees Harrington’s join Panhead, purchased in 2016, and Emerson’s, purchased in 2012, in the Lion New Zealand stable.

No purchase details have been announced, though Lion purchased Panhead for up to NZ$25-million, with NZ$ 15.1-million upfront and performance payments of up to NZ$10-million over 4 years.

More to come…

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