UK brewer rescued from administration saving 78 jobs

By William Dodds

- Last updated on GMT

North will continue to operate independently following the acquisiton
North will continue to operate independently following the acquisiton

Related tags administration

North Brewing Co has had its future secured after it was acquired by Steve Holt of Kirkstall Brewery.

Howard Smith and Rick Harrison of Interpath Advisory were appointed Joint Administrators of North Brewing Company Ltd, North Brewing Leisure and North Brewing Management Limited on 25 January 2024, four days after its co-founders confirmed they were seeking additional investment.

Based in Leeds, North operates a brewery and tap room at its Springwell site, as well as 10 venues in the UK and another in Italy. Its beers are sold in UK supermarkets and bars, and are exported to 27 countries around the world.

The decision to call in administrators came after a difficult period for the brand, with co-founders John Gyngell and Christian Townsley citing “the turbulence of Covid, Brexit, material cost increases, cost of living crisis and interest rate rises​”.

However, Interpath Advisory has now sold the business and its assets to Vertical Drinks Limited and Kirkstall Brewery Limited as part of one transaction, safeguarding the future of the brewery, its North Taproom bars in Leeds and Manchester and 78 members of staff.

The transaction does not include the North Taproom in Birmingham, which will lead to 15 redundancies.

Commenting on the news, Gyngell said: “We are pleased to have found a solution for our team and the legacy of the North brand”

Holt, the director of Kirkstall Brewery, added: “We’ve been friends and industry colleagues for almost 30 years, North is an iconic beer brand that had to continue. Together we’ll make sure that North will continue to make some of the best beer in the country.”

Following the acquisition, North will operate independently but under the new company Vertical Drinks Ltd T/A North.

Tom Swiers, head of food and drink at Interpath Advisory, said that the firm was pleased to have found a new buyer so quickly.

“North Brewing Co is a renowned craft brewer that has forged an excellent reputation over the years for the quality and innovation of its beers​,” continued Swiers.

“The deal will allow the Group to move forward under new ownership and we wish the purchaser and the management team all the best for the future.”

In other news, Heather Mills has revived VBites after purchasing its assets for £1m from administrators.

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