Northampton’s first specialist beer store is raising a glass to future success thanks to funding from Yorkshire Bank. Beer Guerrilla, which has just opened its doors in the town’s Wellingborough Road, sells high quality craft beer, real ale and cider in bottles, cans from draft kegs and casks.
The store’s supplies are primarily sourced directly from leading local independent breweries along with prominent UK craft brewers such as Magic Rock, Cloudwater and Beavertown although it also stocks top quality craft beer from countries such as Germany, Belgium and the US.
Beer Guerrilla is the brainchild of husband and wife team Matthew and Cherie Boot. Matthew has had a diverse career having served in the armed forces for a number of years, worked for a large corporate bank and as a site manager for a local construction company.
Cherie is a Business and Marketing manager for a successful local hair salon and focuses on business development and managing Beer Guerrilla’s online presence.
The store is the first in the area to focus on selling ‘growlers’, a US takeaway beer concept which allows customers to purchase for a small fee a recyclable one or two litre bottle which is filled directly from an in-store draft beer dispense system which keeps beer keg fresh for up to six weeks. Customers can return to the store to have their ‘growler’ re-filled from an ever changing beer selection.
In addition, the store has a small ‘tasting area’ where customers can sample some of the beers on offer.
Matthew and Cherie also plan to host beer tasting evenings and to introduce a subscription-based Beer Club which will see customers receive a crate of 12 quality craft beers on a monthly basis. Beer Guerrilla has been partially funded by the financial support of Yorkshire Bank in a deal facilitated by Relationship Manager Gregory Hannon. The funds have been used to support the initial set-up of the business as well as the purchase of stock, fixtures, fittings and fridges for the property.
The couple are also investing their own equity in the business and have secured grant funding from Northampton Council’s redevelopment scheme.
Matthew Boot commented: “This is the first store of its kind in the Northampton area and all the research we’ve done tells us that there is huge potential in the town for the concept.
“The annual Northampton Beer Festival regularly attracts more than 8000 visitors and we believe there is a great opportunity to establish a real community amongst the people interested in beer locally. Consumers are becoming very discerning not just about the quality of the product itself, but increasingly about the stories and values behind the beer they’re drinking.
“There are great new beers being launched all the time and our aim is to create a hub for quality beer in Northampton and establish a business that the area can be really proud of.
“The Business Direct team at Yorkshire Bank have been very enthusiastic about our concept for the business and their support has been invaluable in helping us to realise our ambitions.”
Gregory Hannon, Relationship Manager for Business Direct at Yorkshire Bank, said: “Matthew and Cherie have researched their business proposition very thoroughly and they have some great ideas for tapping into a sector of the market which has experienced a boom over the past few years and continues to grow in popularity.”