NEW ZEALAND – Heineken-owned DB Breweries, which owns bars and liquor brands including Tui, Monteiths and Redwood Cider, has bought Kapiti boutique brewer Tuatara Brewing Co for an undisclosed sum.

The local unit of the Dutch beer giant will keep the founding Vasta family involved in the brewing and logistics of Tuatara, and continue to produce beer from the craft brewer’s Kapiti and Wellington sites, it said in a statement.

No price was disclosed, though cornerstone shareholder Rangatira Investments valued its 36% stake at $3.6 million as at September 30, implying the entire business was worth $10 million at the time.

Rangatira’s share of losses from Tuatara was $134,000 in the six months ended September 30.

Rangatira invested $3.1 million for its Tuatara stake in 2013, saying at the time that the brewer was a growth company in a growth sector and capable of developing a global presence.

Tuatara national sales manager Blair Harley today said DB offers the resources to expand the Kapiti brewer’s domestic and international consumers.

The local brewer produced two million litres of beer in 2016, twice the volume when Rangatira bought in.

The DB acquisition is the latest in a string of major brewers buying smaller boutique operators in a market where craft beer sales are on the rise, even as overall liquor consumption is down.

Most recently, rival Lion acquired Upper Hutt’s Panhead last year.

January 31, 2017;