New South Wales’ reigning champion Indie Brewery, All Hands Brewing House, has been sold in a $20 million deal to the Signature Hospitality Group.
Signature, which owns The Sporting Globe and TGI Fridays chains as well as Foresters in Brisbane and WJ Wills in South Melbourne, acquired the business from the Red Rock Leisure Group, owners of P.J.O’Brien’s Irish Pubs, Southbank Melbourne venues including BearBrass and Hophaus as well as Cairns Airport venues.
The deal highlights the growing trend for craft breweries to be seen as attractive tenants in major developments, from shopping centres to airports.
JLL Hotels and Hospitality’s national director John Musca, who brokered the deal, said that hospitality groups were conscious of the opportunity in the craft beer sector.
“Craft breweries are rapidly becoming an essential part of, if not expanding, the Australian hospitality experience with the intensified merger and acquisition activity testimony to the increased capital drawn to the space,” Musca said.
“The breweries are driving a new level of beverage engagement, building brand stories and customer relationships that create a dedicated following.”
Musca said the All Hands Brewing House is a “rare combination” of state-of-the-art microbrewery with a beer garden and event space, and highlighted that that the strategic acquisition was an investment in craft breweries, which are the “fastest growing category in the pubs sector” according to a press release on the acquisition.
Signature Hospitality Group said the acquisition of All Hands from Red Rock would allow it to potentially launch its brands in Sydney.
Voted Best Independent Brewery NSW 2019 and Best Brewpub Australia 2019, Darling Harbour’s All Hands opened in 2004 with a microbrewery on site, and was rebuilt in 2017.
It was originally a James Squire brewpub, before changing hands and names a number of times.
After this it became Bluetongue Brewery, before it was renamed King Street Brewhouse, the home of the Red Tape Brewing Company.