Renowned inner west Sydney brewery Willie the Boatman has joined the Powder Monkey crew after an asset and business sale to Southern Highlands Brewing, a Powder Monkey Group company.

Willie the Boatman
Australian craft beer pioneer Pat McInerney (right) with Ben Twomey, Southern Highlands group director

The deal will see the ‘Willies’ brand continue alongside Powder Monkey and Southern Highlands brands in Australia. This follows the merger of Southern Highlands Brewing into the Gosport, UK-based Powder Monkey Group in September last year.

Australian craft beer pioneer Pat McInerney is being appointed general manager of the consolidated group in Australia, with a plan to centralise operations and leverage the combined brewing, sales, and marketing teams.

The current Willie the Boatman St Peters brewpub will become the new home for Powder Monkey Australia, serving the beers that all three brands offer. Plans are also afoot for a second brewpub in 2024, most likely in south west Sydney.

“Our merger last year with Powder Monkey provided us with a solid corporate structure in Australia and access to capital,” said group director Ben Twomey.

“Acquisition was always and will continue to be part of the plan. In terms of this purchase, the real key to me was the alignment and rapport between Pat and myself. It’s going to be a fun ride!”

Pat McInerney added: “I’m excited to be working with Ben and the Powder Monkey Group. There is a defined and tangible business plan with this group which provides a great route for Willie the Boatman to sail into the future. I can already see the benefits of working with like-minded industry players.”

UK-based group CEO, Andy Burdon, added: “Powder Monkey started brewing in the UK in 2021 and has grown rapidly to date, and the addition of Willie the Boatman to our portfolio and Pat joining the team in Australia is fantastic news for the brand.”