Black Sheep Brewery saved by London-based investment firm


Breal Group purchases landmark North Yorkshire site to guarantee jobs and the firm’s signature beers.

The threat of closure at one of the best-known breweries in the north of England has been lifted after London-based investor Breal Group purchased the Black Sheep Brewery.

The future of the North Yorkshire firm had been in jeopardy for a number of weeks since it revealed in April that a sale or merger was being considered as a way of attracting investment, a month later being forced to appoint administrators. The business had been hit by what was described as the “perfect storm” of rising costs and the effect of the Covid pandemic, managing director Rob Theakston admitting that in February this year it was left with no choice but to increase prices by 19.5 per cent.

The future of the 150 employees appeared in serious doubt for a number of weeks before the recent announcement that the Breal Group had acquired what is now called the Black Sheep Brewing Company Ltd, the sale meaning jobs would be protected and its beers, including the signature Black Sheep Best Bitter, would continue to be produced.

A spokesperson for the company said: “We are pleased to announce that Black Sheep Brewery has been acquired by the Breal Group and has become Black Sheep Brewing Company Limited, trading as Black Sheep Brewery.

“This marks the next chapter in the history of Black Sheep as we look to grow the business in a sustainable way. Our team will continue to produce great beers from our landmark brewery in Masham, North Yorkshire.”

The firm's new owners were described as having a “a proven track record” in transforming and growing businesses, the Black Sheep spokesperson added.

Falstaff Editorial Team
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