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Pikes’ craft beer revolution

BEER has been part of the Pike’s family history for generations.

In 1886, Henry Pike established Pikes Dorset Brewery. Back then, the Pike name was known across South Australia.

Fast track 130 plus years and with the help of an Export Partnership Program grant, the Pike’s Beer Company is making a name for itself across the world.

The later generations of the Pike family expanded into winemaking in the 70s. In 1984 they established Pikes Wines, at Polish Hill River Estate in the Clare Valley.

Returning to the family’s roots, Andrew and Neil Pike, co-directors of Pikes Wines, decided to reintroduce Pikes Beer back in 1996.

While originally a small part of the Pikes family business, the boom in the craft beer industry in the last few years has given them the perfect platform to expand.

“We already had well-established distribution networks for Pikes Wines across about fifteen countries, so we were familiar with exporting, however it still takes a lot of planning and research to reach new markets with different products,” Andrew said.

“The EPP grant helped us in our production of marketing materials and programs that were essential to building international success, including the development of an export ready website,” Andrew said.

“Today we export craft beer to seven countries worldwide – the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, China, Poland, the Philippines, Ireland and Japan – and we have just secured a significant supply contract with a major hospitality group in England.

The Office of the Agent General in London has been working with the company to increase their networks in the UK.

“We are seeing a craft beer revolution globally, and this increased appetite for high quality beer beverages is exciting for us,” said Andrew.

“It helps your brand recognition if you have export markets and we look forward to exploring further opportunities for our beers in various markets.”

When asked what advice he would give to other small to medium sized businesses planning to export, Andrew said he couldn’t stress enough the importance of planning.

“My advice to businesses would be to do your research carefully, make sure you have a great story to tell, and take advantage of the considerable government support available to help you get export ready”.

The EPP provides funding assistance for small and medium-sized businesses to access new global markets through marketing and export development opportunities.

In the latest round of Export Partnership Program funding, awarded 19 South Australian businesses a share in $466,256 to access new global markets.

These businesses include seven wineries and four food and beverage operators, along with companies in the advanced manufacturing, agriculture, publishing and film making industries.