BIRCUS NEWS – APRIL 1, 2017 – V7
So much has happened since our February 10th newsletter. Amazing progress, a staff addition, successful soft opening, and a defined date for a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy inspection.
Let’s start with our staff addition. Some of you have already met Penny Flavin who joined us back in October as a college intern. After completing her internship, the BIRCUS team voted to keep her on part-time working 25 hours a week. Penny has been an integral part of getting us where we are today by keeping the multitude of juggling balls in the air, picking up the ones that drop and getting them airborne again, and working with the team to anticipate and plan our forward movements. Since her degree is in Supply Chain we have given her the job title of Logistics and an email name of firstname.lastname@example.org which aptly fits with the many projects and areas of work she handles. We look forward to the day we are selling enough beer to bring her on full-time.
Many of you were able to make it to our soft opening on March 18 for the Shop Ludlow Day. Sean, our brewer, had 5 great beers on tap for this event and we sold out of all 5! Sean and Ryan triumphed on their first bartending gig serving up these delicious BIRCUS beers: Hoppy Amber, Scotch Ale, Kolsch, Whit Bier, and a Blue Oven Bread Beer. The curiosity to try the bread beer made it the first to sell out and the feedback was unanimous that it was one to keep on the handbill. Even though the weather was a little cool for this event our patio heaters, warm food sold by Meat Packers food truck, fire juggling entertainment and a bit of music had folks enjoying their stay.
As many of you know, we have been waiting to get our Occupancy Permit for a while now. This week we were told we can expect completion and inspection by April 7th to get a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy. This has been a long-awaited accomplishment that will move us forward to full capacity brewing as well as holding summer camps for the Circus Mojo Community Foundation. For those brewing enthusiasts who like more details we also have a lot of check marks on our to-do list. The gas vent, steam vent, and plumbing vent are all completed. The glycol system is 100% operational. Cleaning of brites and fermenters has begun. Ryan, our guru, has built our CIP (cleaning in place) equipment at a substantial savings. And we are told that by the end of next week our security system will be installed and operational. It’s been an extremely busy seven weeks here at BIRCUS!
April 30, 2017 will bring us to the end of our SEC Reg A+ investment opportunity. We are $200,000 away from our full investment amount needed to open as a taproom. Our current funds are enough to begin brewing full scale. So, here’s my quest for you, our investors – reach out to friends and family and share this unique opportunity with them or even think about doubling up on your own investment. Let’s get this brewery open on a full scale so that the profits can begin “pouring” in.
As brewing begins and we look to the summer, here are a few of our thoughts and plans. With great forethought on the part of Kathy Hendrix our TTB Consultant, our on-site parking lot is also a designated outdoor patio which means we can officially serve from this space. We are in the planning stages of working out a schedule for open hours and events in this space over the summer with the hopes that the next 30 days brings in the remaining investment dollars to open the taproom by summers end. In addition to patio hours we will be pouring at fairs and festivals around the NKY area over the summer, taking advantage of Kentucky’s new regulation allowing self-distribution at non-profit events. Look to our Facebook page, Twitter account, website and emails to learn about these events as we schedule them.
Looking forward to seeing all of you over the summer,
BIRCUS NEWS – February 10, 2017 – V6
Come meet Sean Gregor our new Brew Master and according to a Google search, possibly the youngest head brewer to date. This is an opportunity to sample beer that he has home brewed as well as beer from his family’s brewery The Church Street Brewing Company based outside of Chicago.
Please share & RSVP via email or on the FACEBOOK EVENT PAGE
- When: Thursday, February 16
- Time: 7:00 pm
- Where: Bircus Brewing Company, 326 Elm St, Ludlow, Kentucky
He’s got the skills to pay the bills! Here is a snippet of his intro email that caught our attention:
My name is Sean Gregor. I’m originally from Chicago but I moved to Cincinnati for school. I grew up working at my family’s brewery in Chicago and always enjoyed the environment and industry…..I have worked about every part of my family’s brewery, Church Street Brewing. Church Street is a 30 barrel production facility with 14 fermenters and a large tap room. I mostly worked as a cellarman and performed various roles on the packaging line during my time there. I also performed the role of an analyst, measuring gravity readings and monitoring the fermentation process to make sure our beer was fermenting correctly and completely….
We hope you can join us next Thursday for some beer sampling, an update on our brewhouse progress, and a chance to invest in this dynamic destination!
Thank you to those who made it out to our Circus Sampler:
Our team worked hard to secure the permits and produce a quality experience for everyone. I was happy to share the proof of concept and see so many investors bring family and friends. I can’t wait to make this happen at the Brewery!
Glycol Lines are set Electric will be run to the equipment this coming week and our heat/smoke detection permits/work should begin.
280 Units of 500 have been sold. The Angel Investor Tax Credit is currently under a waiting list the full 3 Million in credits were used in the first round, which surprised the Cabinet for Economic Development.
Thank you for backing BIRCUS and I hope you will join us next week. Please feel free to invite potential investors and encourage them to bring their checkbooks.
Cheers, Paul 513-206-4622 (M)
BIRCUS NEWS – JANUARY 23, 2017 – V5
P.T. Barnum said, “Without promotion, something terrible happens … nothing!” In that spirit we invite you to join us for our BIRCUS Brewing Co. Circus Sampler: https://www.facebook.com/events/1727760340583604/
Who: BIRCUS Brewing Co., Blue Oven Bakery and Circus Mojo
What: Circus Sampler
Where: Sts. Boniface & James Auditorium
318 Oak St., Ludlow, KY 41016
When: Friday and Saturday, January 27 & 28, 2017, 8:00 PM
With the recent announcement of Ringling Bros. closing in May, I gave my take on the news and the Greatest Show on Earth in the following interviews.
Fox 19: http://www.fox19.com/clip/13031443/ringling-bros-and-barnum-bailey-circus-closing?autostart=true# (Worked in an invite to our BIRCUS Sampler)
Channel 9 On Your Side: (Check out our brewery equipment in background!) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SeNyb-Nuwzo
Our Show Must Go On and BIRCUS thanks you for your investment. Please bring your friends and family to our Circus Sampler! Our tanks are set in place and we are closer to brewing. If you can’t make it, check out this vitrual tour: https://vimeo.com/200701341.
We are just over 1/2 our goal. I am looking forward to promoting BIRCUS and leveraging the many lessons I learned in the circus…
BIRCUS NEWS – January 7, 2017 – V4
HAPPY NEW YEAR
What a great year 2017 is going to be! Let’s start with our hopes and goals for BIRCUS in the new year: beer will begin flowing, our tap room will open, amazing special events will take place, and Circus Mojo will perform for our customers. Every day at BIRCUS is exciting as we jump through government red tape, watch the brew house take shape, and interview potential brewers to bring the brewery to life.
What a challenging year 2016 was! We trudged on through the government red tape, hit our first investment goal, and waited patiently for work to begin in the brew house. Many investors and potential investors came through our doors to hear what our crazy (DETERMINED) circus clown Pauly had to say about this new destination concept called BIRCUS. Thank you to those of you that made an investment in your future and ours here at BIRCUS Brewing.
Join us for live music, live circus, beer, bread sampling from Blue Oven Breads and a tour of the brew house progress. If you are already an investor, you have already heard the pitch, so this is an opportunity to share our investment opportunity with others or just enjoy a fun evening out. We have raised over half of our $500,000 investment goal and we are pushing to close the loop before our Reg A+ expires on March 31, 2017.
Circus Sampler Dates: Location:
January 27 & 28 – 7:00 p.m. Auditorium at St. Boniface & James
February 24 & 25 – 7:00 p.m. 304 Oak St, Ludlow, Kentucky
BREWER JOB POSTING
We are in the process of interviewing brewers. If you or someone you know is interested, please direct them to the ProBrewer.com website for the job description and information on how to apply. Here is the link: http://discussions.probrewer.com/showthread.php?63105-Head-Brewer-for-startup-full-time
Who doesn’t love a tax credit? BIRCUS Brewing Company (aka Gourmet Renee LLC) is now a Kentucky Angel Investors Tax Credit qualified small business opportunity. For those that qualify with the CED and invest at the $10,000 level, you can earn a 40% tax credit. Imagine a $4,000 tax credit!!! Learn more at http://www.thinkkentucky.com/entrepreneurship/kaitc.aspx
BREW HOUSE PROGRESS
The latest progress on the brew house is the pouring of the curbs to place the brewing tanks in their permanent home. To mark this momentous occasion, we invited employees and friends to write their name in the cement. Take a look at the video. https://www.instagram.com/p/BO8GB4jhYYz/?taken-by=bircusbeer
I am happy to host any potential investors for a site visit. Please connect with me if you’d like to arrange a meeting.
BIRCUS NEWS – NOVEMBER 26, 2016 – V3
Happy Small Business Saturday!
We have surpassed our goal. Monday the brewing equipment will be owned free and clear by BIRCUS Brewing Co. Construction is ready to begin.
I am very grateful for your investment and believing in the BIRCUS mission and vision.
Here is our latest pitch – please share!
BIRCUS NEWS – NOVEMBER 4, 2016 – V2
A newsletter asking for checks and two weeks of mail has garnered results! We have gained another investor and one of our investors increased their contribution. Remember, we have a verbal commitment for over the full $150,000. Now we need money in the bank. We are only $18,000 away folks, so please send in your checks so we can begin brewing.
Last week we received our Building Permit, which means we have been given the green light to manufacture product within the building. Following that great news came the news that Ryan Fardo, our Strongmanager, has all the equipment up and running. Have a Look We are technically ready to brew beer!
The INC.com article (Have a read) hit the news October 25th. Scott Mautz, the author, did a fantastic job of sharing my thoughts and visions for Circus Mojo and the need to open Bircus Brewing. Here is some history behind my answers to his questions.
- Look for funding in non-traditional places – It took 3 years and a ton of work but the result is the SEC Regulation A+ purchasing option that gives our investors the chance to invest in their local community and the great American small business.
- The deals are out there – Opportunities to repurpose are huge and we have taken every advantage to purchase our equipment at deep discounts: a building no one believed in plus brewing equipment, furniture, lighting and sound equipment through bankruptcy. Significant equity is in place.
- Ask for help – To make sure our permits and licensing were done right, I sought out the experts. This has been a big reason why our beer licenses and building permits have been approved in a timely manner. I ask for help whenever/wherever I can. Now I need your help getting this off the ground – please mail your check today!
- Stick to your business model – Our business model is unique and I believe it will stand the test of time. I’ve been working in the circus for 20 years and today’s culture is ripe to include beer as a concession. I know the Ludlow Theatre/Bircus Brewing Company will be a one-of-a-kind destination that will continue to draw people to Ludlow at a solid profit margin while also building our brand.
- Dream big – I am both a dreamer and doer! I firmly believe that together Bircus Brewing and Circus Mojo can become a brand name with big success. Thank you for investing and in believing in this dream.
- Ensure your startup starts up with a purpose – A purpose driven business seeks win-win-win solutions as often as possible. In order to share our success with others, our $5K investors get to sponsor a fundraising night for an organization of their choosing. Those of you who have invested at this level have received an email from Penny Flavin, our Logistics Contortionist and Intern heading our charitable efforts. Please reach back to Penny so that we can share your purpose for investing in the Bircus Brewing Company.
GIVE THE GIFT OF BIRCUS
Holiday Gift Giving Ideas:
- Demonstrate your “THANKS” at Thanksgiving by investing in a unique Regulation A+ Destination and help build a community.
- Invest $125 for each of the 8 nights of Chanukah to give the gift that keeps on giving. Great beer and a dividend, too.
- Don’t buy Dad a book, a sweater, or more golf balls…. Instead, chip in and buy a brewery for your dad, mom or other loved ones this Holiday Season.
Please pass this idea along and share this page: https://bircus.com/ investors/
BIRCUS NEWS – OCTOBER 20, 2016 – V1
As many investors share ideas and ask questions regarding progress, I have decided to start a bi-monthly update to keep everyone informed as we advance in our efforts to get BIRCUS Brewing fully funded and making beer. Rest assured if you have asked me about something, I am working on an answer and will share it in a future newsletter.
Let’s start with funding since everything revolves around this topic. We have a fully funded brewery on a verbal level. However, legally we cannot begin making beer until the full $150,000 is deposited into the bank. This is where we need those of you who have not yet written your checks to move us to the top of your to-do pile. By getting your signed contract and check to us within the next week or two, we can be brewing by Christmas. Tis the season to send your check, drink and be jolly. (Checks=Beer)
We have hired Ryan Fardo as our comprehensive project management expert, affectionately known as our Strongmanager. Ryan brings with him a wealth of talent and knowledge that is essential to setting up our brewing system. A recommendation from my lawyer reinforces our decision to bring Ryan on staff: “The most important person you should hire is a mechanically minded, hands-on expert.” We hit the jackpot with Ryan.
Also on board as an intern is Penny Flavin, Logistics Contortionist, who will be coordinating our charitable outreach events to pour BIRCUS and produce circus for our grassroots marketing strategy. She is currently working on communications to reach out to our $5,000 investors who get to choose a fundraising event in honor of their favorite organization or charity. Be on the lookout for an email from Penny next week.
Our initial brewer, Alex Clemens, has decided to move on to other projects and is no longer with BIRCUS. We wish Alex well in his endeavors. This leaves an opening that we have decided to fill with a brewer with some commercial experience. If you or someone you know meets this requirement, please reach out to me. We plan to host an audition to find the right Brewmaster with a P.T. Barnum-style Brew Off.
First, Hermes Construction has been hired to manage the process of securing permits. This was a major aspect of the disclosure contract and we are close to accomplishing this goal. Hermes Construction was the original contractor that installed the current system, so their historical knowledge will be invaluable to our progress. Based on investor requests we have submitted a lease amendment “Option to Purchase” based on two Commercial Institute Appraisals at the end of the 5 year lease. As soon as this is finalized and approved via the SEC (and 3 states) this will be shared with all of you.
Second, Planning and Development Services (PDS) and the City of Ludlow have been onsite and working with us to allow for guest walk-throughs in the building while waiting for our official occupancy permit. This allowed us to participate in last week’s Beyond the Curb event in Ludlow and meet many future guests. (Checks=Beer=Guests)
Last week I had the opportunity to interview with Inc. Magazine regarding our work. It started with the topic of “Scary Clowns” and ended with a chance to share our vision of BIRCUS and Circus Mojo. This should hit the news today or next Tuesday. Read and spread the good news.
LOOKING FORWARD – NEXT UPDATE
Investments: ideas for Christmas, 2017 tax incentive, and long-term growth
Funding Updates (Checks=Fully Funded=Beer)
Building & Permit Updates
Brew Off Update