Smuttynose Parent Company Acquires Five Boroughs Brewing Co.

Finestfind Brewing, the company operating New England brewing institution Smuttynose Brewing (and named after its flagship Finestkind IPA) has acquired Brooklyn-based Five Boroughs Brewing Co.

Since opening in 2017, Brooklyn-based FIve Boroughs Brewing Co. has developed into a buzzy brewery which has grown its distribution footprint throughout the tristate area. Through the acquisition, FIve Boroughs will gain access to expanded production capacity and the ability to further its geographical footprint.

Each property will gain a stronger presence outside its home region, with Five Boroughs expanding its distribution and Smuttynose gaining stronger distribution throughout New York and the tristate area in pursuit of the brand’s goal of “establishing a new beverage platform, with a focus on geographical diversification.”



"Smuttynose is a craft beer pioneer, and we share their commitment to high-quality craft beers,” Blake Tomnitz, co-founder and CEO of Five Boroughs Brewing Co., said in a statement. “Under their leadership, we're confident in the brand's continued growth."

Five Boroughs’ Sunset Park, Brooklyn taproom will remain an important part of the brewery’s operation, which Co-Founder and COO Kevin O'Donnell said in a statement will function “as a hub for creativity and experimentation,” serving as a home base for the brewery to support new projects, including small batch beers.

Five Boroughs’  separation into a local hub focusing on innovation and on-premise sales, and a separate facility dedicated to wider distribution, makes sense in the context of the separate challenges facing smaller breweries -- and the high cost of New York real estate.

The acquisition also appears to be part of a broader innovation strategy on the part of Finestkind Brewing, including plans to expand into the non-alcoholic space, which has been a source of growth for breweries otherwise struggling to retain consumers.

Going forward, Five Boroughs will function as one of Finestkind’s core brands, alongside Smuttynose and Island District Cocktails -- a canned cocktail brand launched in 2021.

The acquisition is notable as part of a new cycle of craft beer acquisitions, no longer fueled by the brewing industry’s largest players (who in some cases are even divesting from existing craft brands). This has left a new landscape where acquisitions come from both inside and outside the brewing industry. Canadian cannabis company TIlray Brands, which acquired Montauk Brewing last year, has provided another example of this new acquisition landscape. The arrangement has allowed Montauk Brewing to expand in pursuit of national distribution.


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