B9 Beverages Pvt Ltd the owner of the Indian craft beer brand Bira 91, is to open a fifth local brewery by the end of the year to capitalize on the country's growing appetite for more flavorful tipples ahead of a planned initial public offering.
The new brewery in Madhya Pradesh – Bira's second in the central Indian state – would initially add 400,000 hectoliters per year, according to Ankur Jain, the brewery's 41-year-old chief executive officer who founded the company in 2015.
B9, which is known for its cartoon punk monkey mascot and is backed by Sequoia Capital and Japanese beverage company Kirin Holdings Co., has raised approximately $50 million this year from investors. Amid intense interest in India's startup ecosystem – and their initial public offerings (IPOs), Jain said the brewer is also preparing for its final and largest round of private fundraising, which is scheduled to end in 2021, before deciding on its listing strategy.
"The long-term view is positive, owing to growing demand from youthful consumers, increased income, and scorching summers," said Apoorva Nema, practice head at research firm GlobalData, which estimates that the Indian beer market would expand by 36% this year after falling by 40% in 2020.
While India's beer business has been hard impacted by Covid-related lockdowns, Jain said Bira, which brews a variety of lagers, stouts, and ales, has managed to treble its sales and triple its market share as a result of increased consumer awareness.