INNIS & GUNN, the Scottish craft brewer, has launched a £3 million equity crowdfunding drive to make up the remaining part of the £20m package to develop its new Edinburgh brewery.

The firm said the Seedrs platform campaign will help provide funding for a facility it is claimed will be largest brewery of that scale in the city for a century and a half.

It will create around 30 jobs and give Innis & Gunn the opportunity to offer brewing services to others for the first time, with doors expected to open in 2021.

The firm also plans to open six new pubs over three years.

READ MORE: Innis & Gunn unveils first image of planned Edinburgh brewery

The brewery, the location of which is yet to be announced, will bring all production and packaging in house, ending the current outsourcing model and reducing costs.

The Herald:

Dougal Gunn Sharp, founder and master brewer at Innis & Gunn, said: “Putting roots down in the city and building a brewery, the first one for over 150 years of this scale in the city, is a fitting legacy for a brand that started in the city.

“We did an operational review in 2018 and we concluded that with the amount of complexity that outsourcing was driving in our business that the right thing to do from a business perspective was to build a brewery that would simplify operations and take a lot of costs out of the business, and would enhance all aspects of operations right across the group.

“Once we had taken that decision there was a feasibility study, what it would cost and where we might build it, so all of that work has been done and we are expecting to go for planning in December.

“We are actually quite far advanced with the project, but with any project like this a lot of the work has to go in up front."

READ MORE: New £20m Edinburgh brewery to be built by Innis & Gunn

He said: “When you’re spending £20m you really need to measure twice and cut once.

“The funding is made up of £7m that is from existing cash assets and a grant, £3m from the crowdfunding, which is the publicly quoted target for the campaign through Seedrs and then £10m in long-term debt funding.

“Over and above securing Innis & Gunn’s long-term future in Edinburgh, of course for investors it is leaving that legacy, being a part of that project.

“For the first time also it gives us the opportunity to offer contract brewing and packing services to other brewers, which we believe may be particularly interesting to some of the big brewers who are seeking world-class modern brewing facilities in the UK, which strategically speaking could be good for us in the long-term.

“We can’t wait to get started.”

READ MORE: Innis & Gunn chief reflects on decade of growth

The plans include a beer garden and Taproom. Mr Sharp said: “The campaign is live now and is off to a good start.

“We are offering two ways of investing, one is straight equity and the other is we have written to our bondholders and offering them the opportunity to convert into equity in this round, and we are seeing good uptake.

“We’ve set the minimum investment level deliberately low in the equity round because this isn’t just about the money for us, it is about getting as many people into the community as we can.”

Mr Sharp added: “Part of our strength as a business comes from the community of fans we’ve built across the globe.”

In the three years since its last fundraiser Innis & Gunn has increased turnover to over £25m.

READ MORE: Innis & Gunn unveils new chairman

Among earlier fundraising rounds the firm secured £15m from L Catterton, the US-based private equity firm, and £2.4m from nearly 2,000 crowdfunding investors.

The firm is also keeping its brewery in Perthshire.

Growth has accelerated through the launch of its Lager Beer which in 2018 grew by nearly 40%.

The brewer also relaunched its pubs as Brewery Taprooms this year with takings up 30%.

The Taproom concept will be rolled out across the UK with two new sites each year for the next three years, it said.