Beer Spot taps franchisees to come aboard

5:00 AM Saturday February 18, 2017 True Commercial

The Beer Spot in Northcote on Auckland’s North Shore is seeking franchisees for another five outlets. Photo / Supplied

The Beer Spot at Northcote on Auckland’s North Shore is now seeking franchisees to open and operate another five bars within the next two years.

Business brokers Ivan and Vernon Tava of Divest Business Sales, say they are expecting strong interest from potential franchisees given “a proven easy-to-operate business model, superior systems and support - combined with exceptional returns on investment”.

The Tavas say the Beer Spot at 54 Northcote Rd oversees the construction and fit-out of all stores, using approved independent contractors.

For an investment of around $500,000 each franchisee will receive:

  • The brand, plus store fit-out managed by successful and experienced operators.
  • All supply arrangements negotiated on their behalf including pricing, trading terms, logistics and promotions.
  • The Beer Spot’s comprehensive initial training programme.
  • The benefit of national brand building and promotional campaigns using contributions received for an all-stores advertising fund.
  • Consultancy on marketing at the local level.
  • Point of Sale (POS), menus and back-office systems managed centrally with state-of-the-art software.
  • Support services and tools to assist the franchisees to manage their businesses.

The friends who founded The Beer Spot, at Northcote, Laurence van Dam and Jason Payn, say they were inspired by a growing appreciation for quality beer.

But they note that despite increasing consumption, there’s a mystifying lack of outlets showcasing the diversity of New Zealand’s brewing ecosystem.

“Most pubs and bars in New Zealand have ‘tied taps’, meaning that they are under contract to sell a limited range of beers owned by the brewery,” says van Dam. “Although there have been some recent, well-publicised acquisitions of craft brewers by the breweries, these represent only a fraction of the varieties available,” he points out.

The Beer Spot was born of a vision of creating a welcoming place where friends could gather to swap stories and enjoy what the two men call, “the current beer revival”.

They use this term to describe the extraordinary cultural phenomena resulting in the doubling in the number of New Zealand craft breweries from about 80 to 160 since 2013.

True Commercial - Beer taps in the Beer Spot%2c Northcote.jpg

Forty beer taps extend the full length of the bar at the Beer Spot. Photo / Supplied

Meanwhile, the growth of market demand for their product is running at a staggering 30 per cent per annum.

“Though this may create fierce competition on the brewing side of the business, the consumer and retailer win out with a never-before-seen diversity of types and brands of high quality local beer,” Payn says.

The Beer Spot aim is to make the sometimes bewildering world of craft beer accessible and welcoming. So much so that they actually reject the use of the word “craft”, calling it “the ‘C’ word”.

According to van Dam the NZ beer scene is a crazy place at present.

“It is glorious to be a part of this, but hard also not to poke a tiny bit of fun at. The word ‘craft’, once described a group of beer-based rebels. But it became inevitable that the big guys would jump in on the craft beer scene. The ‘C’ word has lost its sting and become a marketing prefix. So, instead of joining the battle to become the first to copyright it, we’re dropping it altogether.

“We hunt and gather the very best beers from all over New Zealand to satisfy the beer aficionado and casual beer fan alike”, says van Dam.

All 40 taps pour locally-brewed beer, sourced on a rotating basis and sold on-site by tasting flights, glass and jug.

Off-site the same variety can be provided in 750ml bottles, purged and pressure-filled from the keg to take home.

The beer selection is complemented by food provided by a carefully selected, ever-changing roster of food trucks and staff – resulting in a popular and successful concept.