|Sitting at the bar at Phantom Canyon Brewing|
Earlier today the beer world was informed of another merger. Just a few days ago it was Rock Bottom, Gordon Biersch and Craftworks. Today it is Breckenridge Holdings (of Breckenridge Brewing) and Wynkoop Holdings (of Wynkoop Brewing). Each group have 7 businesses, including Wynkoop’s holdings of Phantom Canyon Brewing here in Colorado Springs. Each of the fourteen businesses will keep their identity.
As the Westword Blog points out, Breckenridge has a bottling line that can bottle or can 60,000 barrels of beer per year, but is only running half that currently. I don’t want to speak prematurely here, but I’m hoping that means we’ll see some of Phantom Canyon’s awesome beers available in stores.
Denver, CO – December 1, 2010 – Breckenridge Holding Company, the owner and operator of the Breckenridge Brewery and other food and beverage concepts, announces plans to enter into a 50/50 joint venture agreement with Wynkoop Holdings, Inc., the Denver-based owner of seven brewpubs and restaurants located in Denver and Colorado Springs. The combined management strength, brand portfolio, and talent of these two Colorado craft beer icons will enable each entity to compete even more effectively in the craft beer and restaurant markets. Breckenridge and Wynkoop expect the joint venture to be finalized in January 2011.
Breckenridge Holding Company will continue to invest in growth and marketing opportunities for Breckenridge Brewery and its Breckenridge Ale House concept. Ed Cerkovnik, President of Breckenridge Holding Company, summarizes the key benefits of the agreement: “Both Breckenridge and Wynkoop companies have rich Colorado histories with similar, yet distinct, cultures. This joint venture captures the synergies of these two successful Denver-based companies. Combining 14 wholly and partially owned subsidiaries under one umbrella gives us the leverage to build a stronger, more diverse, company.” Cerkovnik added that “the combined company provides us with the platform through which we can more effectively pursue growth and expansion of our respective brands and restaurant concepts.”
Wynkoop Holdings, Inc. is led by Lee Driscoll, its CEO and controlling shareholder. “This is a partnership Ed and I have discussed for years; the timing is finally right for making it happen. On the brewing side it means we can quickly grow our canning and self-distribution effort, with help from experienced craft beer veterans. We can get Wynkoop beer to more people without the time and expense of building a new brewery. This also adds a quartet of devoutly beer-minded establishments to our family, and provides a quick dose of depth and shared talent to our beer and food culture.”
“Plus,” Driscoll adds, “it puts two like-minded craft beer pioneers of our state on the same team. Together, our potential for adding to Colorado’s beer culture is very big.”
Wynkoop Holdings operating units consist of the Wynkoop Brewing Company, Phantom Canyon Brewing Company, Wazee Supper Club, Goosetown Tavern, Cherry Cricket, Pearl Street Grill, and Gaetano’s. Wynkoop Brewing Company, Colorado’s first brewpub, was founded in 1988 by Denver mayor and Colorado governor-elect John Hickenlooper and a group of urban pioneers that included Mark Schiffler (current Wynkoop COO) and Ron Robinson (Wynkoop’s current GM).
Breckenridge Holding Company operates seven wholly and partially owned businesses, all of which are located in Colorado, including the Breckenridge Brewery of Colorado, a regional craft brewery in Denver; Breckenridge Brewery & Pub, a brewpub in Breckenridge; the Breckenridge Blake Street Pub located in the Ballpark Neighborhood of Denver; Breckenridge Brewery and BBQ, located in the Golden Triangle area of Denver; and the Breckenridge Ale House in Grand Junction. A second Breckenridge Ale House is scheduled to open in the spring of 2011 in the Lower Highlands area of Denver. Breckenridge Brewery of Colorado handcrafts nearly 30,000 barrels of fresh beer annually and distributes its beer in 28 states.