The Shout Magazine (New Zealand)

Harrington’s bought by Lion

Val Harrington, Rory Glass, John Harrington and Dave Pearce.

Christchurch-based brewery, Harrington’s, has announced they have been purchased by Lion.

Harrington’s is one of the first craft breweries in New Zealand and is a household name in Christchurch having won a number of awards over the years, including a Brewer’s Guild of New Zealand Champion Brewery award in 2012.

“We started the business back in 1991 and the market is now in a very different place,” says Harrington’s Founder, John Harrington. “We’ve been thinking for a while about how best to carry the business into the future and reached out to Lion to see if they’d be interested.

“I’ve had a relationship with Lion since my publican days and it’s always been a dream of ours that one day they’d become Harrington’s steward. They have a strong track record of protecting and growing craft beer brands and we’re confident that the work we’ve done in creating a strong legacy, will be protected, and even strengthened, by this move,” he says. “Lion will give Harrington’s the support needed to deliver sustained growth and give more people the chance to try our great beers.”

Following a period of transition, the brand will be integrated into Lion, who will be directly responsible for supply, sales and distribution of Harrington’s going forward.

While both parties are still working through the details, the brewery will stay in Christchurch and Lion will be working alongside John, who is staying on as Harrington’s brand ambassador to help drive the brand into the future.

Rory Glass, Lion New Zealand Managing Director, says: “Lion was honoured to be approached by Harrington’s and we’re incredibly excited to welcome the brand into our family.

“Harrington’s has such a rich and proud history and will be a fantastic complement to our existing range, with wonderful beers like Rogue Hop, Wobbly Boot and Ngahere Gold. We will build on what has made Harrington’s so great and help make their beers more accessible to people across the country.”

Lion plans to invest around $2 million on updating the Christchurch brewery in the initial stages to reinvigorate the business and improve brewing processes.