Reefton Distilling Co.

Crafters of untamed spirits. Reefton Distilling Co. is based on the West Coast of the South Island, and is the producer of the Little Biddy Gin range, Wild Rain Vodka and a variety of Reefton Distilling Co. fruit liqueurs.
$3,350,000
Funded
Min target: $2,000,000 (22.20% equity)
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$3,350,000 Funded
$2,000,000 Min. target (22.20% equity)
Reefton Distilling Co. hero image

Investor Webinar

Reefton Distilling Co. hosted a webinar for new interested investors with a short presentation from CEO and Founder Patsy Bass, followed by a Q&A Session. To watch the event, click through below.

Watch Webinar

Investor Rewards

Tier 1 ($5,000 and above)

  • 1x bottle of Little Biddy Classic 700ml; a one-off, delivered to your door (within NZ)

Tier 2 ($100,000 and above)

  • 1x bottle of Little Biddy Classic 700ml; a one-off, delivered to your door (within NZ)
  • 20% discount on retail products from our cellar door or online store (for the shareholder's use only, and is not valid on already discounted items)

Please note that these rewards are personal to investors via Snowball Effect and are non-transferable. All investor rewards will be at the company’s discretion and are subject to change.


From the Founder

Since initial concept in 2016 our purpose remains to produce premium New Zealand botanical spirits and fruit liqueurs in Reefton, New Zealand, to create jobs and provide a tourist attraction. We opened our doors on 17 October 2018 and are focused on becoming the No. 1 New Zealand craft gin in the $80+ category.

Within a few months of launch, all of our premium and ultra-premium products had secured Silver and/or Bronze medals at the prestigious San Francisco World Spirits Competition (over 3,000 entrants globally), and the inaugural New Zealand Spirit Awards, proving we have created a product that can stand with the best.

We created four permanent, full time, jobs within two months of opening, with several other part- time, casual and volunteer roles added. We have other roles scoped and needed, subject only to the fine dance that is cashflow for a start-up during this early growth phase.

The West Coast has embraced us, and it seems most of New Zealand is with us, with national tourists coming to Reefton specifically to visit Reefton Distilling Co., and international visitors expressing surprise and delight on discovering a premium distillery tucked into a small West Coast town. More recently we have been receiving tour bookings from overseas as visitors plan their travels. Their endorsement sees our products travelling to every corner of the globe, from Iceland, Ireland and Thailand to the Americas and Canada.

Our Little Biddy Gin range, Wild Rain Vodka and Reefton Distilling Co. fruit Liqueurs are available throughout New Zealand in most major off-premise, online and premium retail outlets.We have recently turned our focus to on-premise (bars and restaurants) and are already stocked in some of the country’s best. Our reach expands almost daily, with our New Zealand distribution partner believing we are New Zealand’s fastest growing gin brand, with huge potential.

Our branding is frequently admired and we have been featured in many of the country’s premium print, radio and online media and will be included in the next edition of Lonely Planet New Zealand and Frommer’s (North American guide book). In June 2019 Griff Rhys-Jones, a popular UK celebrity, spent a day with us and the MacKay twins filming the West Coast episode of Griff’s Kiwi Adventure series. It screened in New Zealand and Australia late 2019 and will screen in the UK this year to an audience of 7 million.

We have proved the concept and will seek to appoint additional capacity at both management and board level to best position us for this next stage. We will actively seek suitably experienced investors and industry insiders from this round to become part of our governance team.

This is our second capital raise after successfully securing $1.385m in early 2018 when we were merely a concept. At the time we indicated that within 12-18 months we expected to need to raise additional capital to scale up operations. Now 18 months in, we are seeking up to $3.5m investment to purchase land and buildings to expand our production facility so that we can meet demand, and to invest in the production of our first premium single malt whisky, Moonlight Creek.

Should our applications to Development West Coast and the Provincial Growth Fund be successful, those funds will be used for land/ buildings and/or fit out depending on quantum, and new shareholder equity will be redirected to working capital and growth. We also need to continue to invest in marketing and branding ahead of projected revenue.

We have taken the decision to install a brewhouse in the new facility as the cost and logistics of contracting our wash has proved unsustainable. We may also seek commercial finance from Development West Coast and/or the Provincial Growth Fund, with positive discussions to date.

In late September 2019 we made our first shipment of stock to Aelia Duty Free, and supported by their projected sales, anticipate delivering $1.3m in sales in F20 at a gross margin of more than 60%.

With demand for our products locally and offshore and with what we believe are attainable optimistic forecasts, we are confident of achieving our targets. While tempered with the realities of a start up experiencing strong growth, our small team has achieved far beyond what we envisaged even 18 months ago. We are absolutely committed to realising the opportunities in front of us for the benefit of all members of our Reefton Distilling Co. family.

We are enormously grateful to our foundation investors for their belief in our initial idea and for providing the financial support that we needed to get established. If you are in a position to invest further in this new offer to enable our expansion, we will be doing our utmost to continue to grow our business and take our products and story to the world.

To those new to Reefton Distilling Co.’s journey, we thank you for giving this offer your consideration and we look forward to having you join us if this offer and our ethos meet your requirements.

Regards,


PATSY BASS

Founder / Managing Director


Your chance to become part of what we believe is New Zealand’s fastest growing craft gin brand. The market for our products is expanding rapidly. All the fundamentals are in place and we are poised for significant growth.


100 Year Vision (2116)

On a large site with views of the surrounding hills and rainforest, Reefton Distilling Co. is beautifully landscaped with the botanicals we use in our products. Our production team step into the gardens on the morning of each distillation to forage for fresh botanicals.

It is home to a large modern production facility that is fully optimised to meet the global demand for our products. There is a brewhouse on site and we are smoking our own malt with local West Coast Manuka. Stainless steel rainwater collection tanks enable the creation of some products directly from the abundance of wild West Coast rainwater.

Combined with a cellar door, outdoor courtyard/ gardens and café which is heavily booked for events and spirit making workshops, Reefton Distilling Co. is a gathering place for the local and wider West Coast community, as well as tourists.

There are multiple bonded stores housing the significant number of resting whisky casks. There is a cooperage restoring and supplying casks to the New Zealand wine and spirits industry, a cluster of luxury tiny miner’s cottages for tourists to stay in our ‘Gin Garden’, a manager’s and/or staff house (for security purposes once we are storing large volumes of whisky casks) and several other related businesses on site.

The Hokitika to Westport daily tourist train brings hundreds of additional visitors to our door each day, adding to the numbers already seeking out this destination distillery.

Reefton Distilling Co. is a major employer in the area and continues to prove and push the boundaries of what is possible in a small regional town. A number of new businesses and tourist activities are operating as a direct result of the revitalisation of Reefton, all retaining the character of the town. 50-100 staff are the soul of the organisation and the community remains fiercely proud of ‘their distillery’, which continues to win awards for both products, innovation and environmental stewardship.

A number of other distilleries and cideries will be established throughout the region, with the West Coast Distillery Trail part of the wider New Zealand Distillery Trail; a major tourist attraction.

There is global demand for our artisan distillers, coopers and hospitality staff on completion of their intensive internship, some of whom were youth previously struggling to find their way. This is one of our proudest achievements.

The distillery achieved many of the above objectives some 80–90 years earlier and was sold at that time to provide a healthy return for its foundation shareholders. The founding ethos remains strong to this day and the business remains firmly in Reefton creating jobs for locals and a popular tourist attraction.


Our people

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

On completion of this capital raise we will commence recruitment for 2-3 Directors with industry specific, start up/scaling and global sales/export skills and experience. At least one Director will be independent.

The company's current board of directors consists of:

Patsy BassFounder / Shareholder / Managing Director

Patsy has a human resource, change and project management background and has consulted to many of New Zealand’s larger companies, including the Ngai Tahu Group, Farmlands and The Order of St John.

Projects have included new commercial builds and office refits, leadership programmes and systems implementation.

Patsy is a former Trustee and General Manager of the Brain Injury Association (Canterbury/West Coast) and Councillor Outward Bound New Zealand.

Jo BransgroveShareholder / Director / Chair

Jo is a Management Consultant and Director. Jo has a Bachelor of Commerce and a Masters of Business and Administration.

Her background spans the accommodation, design and charitable sectors. Previous roles include President of the Wellington Chamber of Commerce, Deputy Chair Consumer New Zealand, GM Corporate for New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, Cancer Society CEO, and Head of the Commerce Act Division of the Commerce Commission.


ADVISORS

  • Jeffrey Lai - Anderson Creagh Lai, Lawyers
  • Simeon Burnett - Snowball Effect
  • Aaron Cassidy - WK Accountants
  • Chris Byrne - Launceston Distillery
  • BNZ Bank

Guy Liu-Pask

Strategic Brand Partner / Double Lux

Guy Pask is one of New Zealand’s leading Strategic Communication thinkers. With over 25 years experience in Brand Development and Communication Design, Guy has helped develop and grow many iconic Australasian brands such as Kathmandu, Bellamy’s Organic and Cloudy Bay.

Carl Carrington 

Carl has 15 years of Managing Director/Director experience within the alcoholic beverages industry across New Zealand, Australia and Asia with a focus on sales, marketing and distribution. Carl is a director on the board of McCashin’s Brewery, Hop Revolution, Good Spirits Hospitality and the Cawthon Institute. Carl is also a chartered member of the Institute of Directors.


FUTURE HIRES

On successful completion of this offer we plan to commence recruitment for an experienced whisky Distiller. We will continue to draw on the experience offered by various experienced distillers and engineers in New Zealand, Australia and Scotland.

We continue to support and buy goods/services from local Reefton and wider West Coast businesses.


OUR STAFF

Photo of Patsy Bass

Patsy Bass Founder & Managing Director

Born in Reefton, Patsy is responsible for all aspects of the business from strategy and new premises design through to hosting tours and events.
Photo of Shane Thrower

Shane Thrower Hospitality Manager, Production Assistant

Shane is responsible for front of house training, product tastings and retail operations. Shane has over 30 years experience as a Chef and former owner/manager of his own successful café/bar in Christchurch. As a chef in Christchurch Prisons for 10 years, Shane introduced NZQA Food Standards into the New Zealand Prison Service. He went on to complete his Post Graduate Diploma in Teaching and Learning, and worked at Linwood College in Christchurch for 12 years, teaching hospitality and food technology. Shane is a NZQA Assessor (Hospitality Service Industry ITO), holds the Professional Chef City and Guilds qualification and a Post Graduate Diploma of Teaching and Learning (Food Technology and Outdoor Education).
Photo of Nick Secker

Nick Secker Distiller

A science graduate from the University of Otago where he studied Botany, Nick manages our production and new recipe development. Having worked in the dairy, tourism, hospitality and conservation sectors before we lured him back from the UK, life as a distiller is the perfect culmination of Nick’s skills and experience. Nick is a Member of the Institute of Brewing and Distilling (UK) and a member of the Blackball Volunteer Fire Brigade.
Photo of Beth Scott

Beth Scott Distiller

Having graduated from University of Otago with a Bachelor of Science (major Food Science; minor Marketing), Beth specialised in food quality moving from sampling and sensory lab into chemistry and new product development. Beth supports production and has been instrumental in reviewing and documenting our processes. Beth has experience in the dairy, tourism and hospitality sectors.
Photo of Nigel & Steffan Mackay

Nigel & Steffan Mackay Water Prospectors, Shareholders and Brand Ambassadors

Twin brothers who were born and grew up in Reefton, Nigel and Steffan are authorities on everything there is to know about the area, its people and its rich history. They have been instrumental in developing the distinct West Coast flavour in our products, and are sought out by our visitors.

Warning statement

It's crucial for you to understand the characteristics and risks of this investment opportunity. New Zealand law normally requires people who offer financial products to provide in-depth information to investors before they invest. The usual rules do not apply to offers by companies through Snowball Effect. As a result, you may not be given all the information you need to make an informed decision. Investing is risky. Some of the key risks include loss of capital, illiquidity, lack of returns, dilution, loss of key people and customers, and lack of control. You should only invest money that you can afford to lose.