The brewery has made an undisclosed investment in the Bermondsey-based producer, co-founder James Watt revealed on stage at BrewDog’s annual AGM in Aberdeen.
Hawkes’ senior management team, including founder Simon Wright, will remain in place following the investment, while the cider maker’s range of products is not expected to change significantly.
The exact amount invested in Hawkes, and the amount of the business owned by BrewDog, has not been disclosed.
A post published on the Scottish brewery’s website outlined its rationale for investing in the cider producer.
“A few months ago, we met with Simon Wright, the founder of Hawkes cider in London,” the post said. “Here, we found a kindred spirit. Hawkes’ approach to cider parallels our heritage with beer, and we see huge potential in the difference the business can make to a mass-market monopolised segment of the drinks scene.
“Cider has a massive opportunity to be so much more than a sweet, fizzy pint of something soulless, or a sickly pink, drink with more calories than a cola. Cider can be as much of a craft beverage as beer, and has as bright a future as brewing.”
“So today, we can announce that we’ve invested in Hawkes, and will be supporting their imminent growth both at home in the UK and internationally. Their range of ciders will remain (and expand), and the people will stay put.
“Simon’s still at the helm with our senior team drafted in to support his ambitions, and we’re insanely excited to see where we can take cider together.”
Challenging the status quo
Commenting on the decision to team up with BrewDog, Hawkes founder Simon Wright added: “We are in an industry that has for far too long allowed ‘big’ cider and mass market products to hold back innovation and growth.
“I’ve long been impressed by BrewDog’s attitude and approach to challenging the status quo of beer in the UK and around the world. Just like us, they stand up for those who want to break free, make a difference and take the cider scene into an entirely new era. I can’t wait to see what the future holds.”
Earlier this year, Wright hit the headlines after criticising the current system of taxation within the UK cider industry, and accusing the National Association of Cider Makers of failing to represent the interests of smaller producers.
Meanwhile, BrewDog's co-founders James Watt and Martin Dickie have admitted the brewery's recent Pink IPA concept was “lost in translation” and suggested they would “probably” reconsider the idea with the benefit of hindsight.