Left to right at the new distribution centre are Ian Blunt, Danny Crabb, Kevin Andrews, Lee Jasper and Tom Abrahams
St Austell Brewery has announced the opening of a 40,000 sq ft storage and distribution depot in Avonmouth, Bristol, creating at least seven new jobs in the area and bolstering the company’s beer, wine and spirits wholesaling business.
As work continues on the construction of the company’s multi-million-pound Hare Brewery investment, at the Bath Ales site in Warmley — due for completion in May 2018 — the decision was taken to combine St Austell’s existing 14,000 sq ft distribution facility in the area and the Bath Ales logistics teams in a larger and more accessible site in Avonmouth.
Head of supply chain, Kevin Andrews, said: “Once work started on the new brewhouse to double the capacity of the Bath Ales output, it was obvious that there would not be adequate space for storage and distribution at Hare House, so it gave us the perfect opportunity to find a bigger and better site to merge the Bath Ales distribution with the existing St Austell Avonmouth distribution team.”
Several factors were considered before the decision was taken to open the new depot in Avonmouth, with accessibility, location and the scope for growth key drivers in the decision-making process. The proximity of the new distribution hub to existing facilities also ensured continuity for customers while the transfer of stocks was carried out.
With increased stockholding and improved service operations, the new Avonmouth depot forms part of a wider strategic move by St Austell Brewery to improve its logistics network and increase its South West coverage.
Kevin added: “As a company, we will have a group barrelage target of 170,000 brewer’s barrels by 2020. With double-digit growth in the Bristol area and now with a larger distribution centre to work from, we are well on our way to achieving that and another step closer to securing our position as the regional brewer and supplier of choice for the South West.”
The new depot will be managed by Tom Abrahams, who joined St Austell Brewery earlier in 2017 with extensive experience in similar roles at Gregory Distribution and at Heineken.