The Cask Project

SOX acquires White Horse Brewery

By Gary Lloyd

- Last updated on GMT

What is happening to Titanic Brewery?

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South Oxfordshire Brewery has acquired neighbouring White Horse Brewery for an undisclosed sum.

The deal sees South Oxfordshire Brewery, which is known locally as SOX, acquire the entire interest in the business from White Horse’s long-standing group of shareholders. The shareholders also included Staffordshire-based Titanic Brewery.

Based in Stanford-in-the-Vale, Oxfordshire, White Horse has been brewing and distributing cask ales to pubs across the county since 2004.

SOX plans to continue to build on White Horse’s successes, increasing brewing capacity and distribution across the wider region.

Superb, balanced beers

SOX managing director James Tomlinson said: “We are delighted to be adding the White Horse Brewery to our existing SOX brewing operation and taproom. 

“It’s a business that makes superb, balanced beers and we’re really looking forward to working with the team there to get these fantastic liquids into the hands of more cask ale fans.”

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The two businesses will continue to be run as separate entities, said Tomlinson – formerly part of the team at West Berkshire Brewery – although the two companies will work together on certain initiatives, such as a joint e-commerce platform, a joint delivery operation and on certain events, such as beer festivals.

“There is a lot the two businesses can collaborate on and there are a lot of commonalities – not least a shared love of fantastic beers. We will certainly aim to position them as sister companies, and help each other wherever possible,” added Tomlinson.

Great comfort

Keith Bott MBE, director of Titanic Brewery, which has been owned by brothers Keith and Dave Bott since 1988 and continues to operate as a family-owned business, said: “It has been an absolute pleasure to be part of the White Horse journey over the past 18 years. 

“The team produces some superb ales and I know James and the team from South Oxfordshire Brewery will do a great job building the brand and bringing those beers to more drinkers. 

“At a time when breweries are closing at an alarming rate, it’s a great comfort to see brewers and business owners coming together, committed to ensuring drinkers still have a wide range of quality drinks to choose from when they visit their local.”

The agreement will see Titanic retain the operation of the Royal Blenheim on Oxford’s St Ebbes Street, where it will continue to serve Titanic, White Horse and local guest beers.

The White Horse Brewery’s selection of cask beers include leading brand Village Idiot (4.1% ABV) as well as Stable Genuis (4.0%), White Horse Bitter (3.7%) and Wayland Smithy (4.4%).

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