Yeastie Boys raise $500K crowdfunded equity in 30 minutes flat

A win for PledgeMe, which has had a mixed record so far.

UPDATE: Yeastie Boy chugged to its target, selling $505,019 worth of shares (12.5% of the company) in 30 minutes flat.

212 bought shares for an average investment of $2382. 

The capital raise — which was scheduled to run through to March 6 if necessary — values the craft beer maker at just over $4 million. 

And it gives PlegeMe a 50% success rate in the newly-legal field of crowdfunded equity.

Ahead of today, the crowdfunder had had three equity listings. It successfully raised $100,000 in quick time to fund its own growth, but crowd funded equity efforts for a hovercraft tourism venture and a computer museum fell well short of their targets.

Yeastie co-founder Stu McKinley — who gave up his day job as a business analyst at Z Energy late last year to focus on growing the company — earlier told NBR that if today was a success the brewer would likely return to the PledgeMe well within a year for more capital.

------------------------

EARLIER: Craft beer maker Yeastie Boys’ equity crowdfunding campaign goes live this evening as they seek to raise $500,000 to fund United Kingdom expansion plans.

Yeastie Boys and PledgeMe will be ringing the listing bell at 6pm at Goldings Freedive in Wellington.

Shares are a dollar each with a minimum buy of $500, so “slicing a piece of Yeastie Boys pie” is a realistic opportunity for their supporters, PledgeMe chief executive Anna Guenther says.

Their minimum goal is to sell $350,000, with the maximum raise of $500,000 representing 12.5% of the company. The partial float values the business at $3.5 million or $4 million if fully funded.

The Wellington-based company was co-founded by Stu McKinlay (previously a business analyst at Z Energy) and Sam Possenniskie. The pair describe themselves as brewers without a brewery. Instead, their "super-premium beer” is contract-brewed at various locations and sold in NZ, Australia, New Caledonia, Norway, USA, Malaysia, Hong  Kong, China, Japan and the UK.

The Yeasties are aiming for faster growth from this point, but are still after more of a community backing feel than hard-nosed private equity players.

The new funds have been earmarked for brewing Yeastie Boys' beer in the UK and used to establish a contract brewing operation to supply the European market. The company is already on 900 taps in Britain following success at the Wetherspoon’s International Real Ales Festival.  

The company has identified a number of risks in its offer document, including lack of cashflow (with no fixed assets borrowing is tricky), distance from key markets and foreign exchange volatility.

The Financial Markets Authority warns potential investors to do their homework, as companies using equity crowdfunding will be at a much earlier stage in their existence than listed companies, so their financial track record and business prospects will be less clear.

PledgeMe has had three listings so far. It successfully raised $100,000 in quick time to fund its own growth, but crowd funded equity efforts for a hovercraft tourism venture and a computer museum fell well short of their targets.

Last July, PledgeMe and Snowball Effect were the first equity crowd funders in New Zealand to receive a licence from the Financial Markets Authority to act as intermediaries between investors and companies offering shares.

Snowball Effect has also offered a craft brewer, Renaissance, which raised $700,000 of new capital in just a week and a half, a quarter of the time the offer was open for punters to commit funds.

26 comments
Login in or Register to view & post comments