Young entrepreneurs: James Brown, Beer52.com
Entrepreneur to watch James Brown is on track for a £1.15m turnover for his craft beer club start-up
Name: James Brown
James Brown’s love of craft beer created the foundations for Beer52; an online community “revolutionising” the way people discover craft beer.
Having learnt from his previous venture which “failed fast, smart and cheap”, Brown is at the fore of a start-up success story with a growing list of leading figures behind him and turnover projected to reach £1.15m for 2014.
Launched in September 2013, Edinburgh-based Beer52 works with independent microbreweries to offer members access to boxes of unique and speciality brews, and Brown says it is currently the UK’s largest online craft beer community with over 2,500 subscribers.
Brown’s lightbulb moment came whilst travelling with his dad on the back of a Harley motorcycle from Scotland to Portugal where, after experiencing (and drinking) a vast array of craft beers, he grew disappointed on his return at “all these great craft beers out there that nobody knows about”.
Brown then made it his “mission to get their bottles into the hands of people who love craft beer” and after a meeting with Fraser Doherty of SuperJam, Growing Business Young Gun of 2009, who agreed to invest, this mission became a reality.
Breaking sales records when it launched on Groupon, selling out with 5,000 deals in 40 minutes, Brown’s beer club has grown rapidly; closing £100,000 through Angels Den crowdfunding platform, named in the Startups Twitter 60, and securing follow-on investment from Secret Escapes’ Andrew Bredon.
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Discussing his plans for the next five to 10 years, Brown envisages himself investing in like-minded young entrepreneurs and “giving back and sharing the lessons I’ve learned”.