By James Atkinson

Burgeoning independent craft brewer Stone & Wood has completed its second capital raising in the space of 12 months to fund expansion into a second brewery.

Founder Jamie Cook on Friday said Stone & Wood had secured a second New South Wales northern rivers site in Murwillumbah, 40 kilometres north of its existing brewery at Byron Bay, which will stay in operation even after the new brewery comes online. 

"We've continued to try and expand the brewery here for the last four years, to try and keep up with demand, and it really has gotten to a point where we are unable to put any more tanks into this place," he said.

Following the most recent capital raising, Cook together with co-founders Brad Rogers and Ross Jurisich and local publican Tom Mooney now control 80 per cent of the company. The remainder is held by a number of minority investors.

The first capital raising occurred last year when Stone & Wood bought back the 20 per cent share of its business held by Lion as a result of the Kirin-owned company's takeover of Little World Beverages. [continued below]

L-R: Brad Rogers, Jamie Cook and Ross Jurisich

Once the new brewery is up and running, it will be tasked firstly with meeting the insatiable customer demand for Stone & Wood's flagship Pacific Ale, before building volumes and distribution of the Jasper Ale and Lager.

The existing Byron Bay facility will be scaled back with the bigger tanks transferred to the new site, which will accommodate a 50-hectolitre DME brewhouse.

"We just love the 25-hectolitre DME brewhouse we've got today, so we're going again," Cook said.

He said the new brewery is expected to be operational by October and importantly, will be able to accommodate ongoing incremental expansion. 

"We've obviously learnt the hard way that you can run out of space pretty quickly in a shed, so we didn't want to make that mistake again."

Cook said Byron Bay will then be able to focus on short run beers, as well as some trial brewing.

"[And] once we clear the excess tanks out of here, it will allow us to improve the visitor experience, it'll give us an opportunity to put a little bar in," he added.

The Shout Team

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