Exporting Case Study: Twisted Wheel Brew Co.
Business started in 2020 now developing an export plan
Family-run Twisted Wheel Brew Co. launched in April 2020 – at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic – offering modern craft beers to both suppliers and consumers direct.
Keen to press on despite the uncertainty the world faced, Managing Director Laura Dearman set up the business alongside her parents and sister, with the aim of creating a truly unique brand that provided quality canned beers.
The company’s flagship range of seven beers includes flavours such as ‘Sunday Sessions’, ‘Technicolour Beat’ and ‘Boulevard of Broken Dreams’, all inspired by the Northern Soul music and dance scene.
Within its first year, the company had sold more than 29,000, increasing to almost 109,000 cans in 2021.
And, in 2021, Laura and the team decided to explore how to take the brand overseas and build an international audience.
She was directed to the Department for International Trade (DIT) to help gain access to the relevant information and guidance the business would need to accelerate its growth outside of the UK.
The company was given support by the DIT via webinars and one-to-ones with trade experts, as well as being introduced to key exporting contacts and networks.
Laura said: “Around a year after launching the business, we were keen to develop our presence overseas but had little knowledge on exactly how to do this.
“Our International Trade Adviser within DIT highlighted a niche “Women in Brewing” event organised by the British Embassy in Stockholm. Sweden was one of the countries we’d earmarked as a target so we embraced this hand-held opportunity to showcase our products at an exclusive reception in Her Majesty’s Ambassador’s residence to which Swedish importers and food and drink stakeholders were invited.
“We have now developed an export plan and, while we’re in the very early stages, we have some exciting tenders in the pipeline that we’re currently waiting to hear back about, we’re hopeful that our exporting journey will really accelerate this year.
“As a business in its infancy with little experience of exporting, the Department for International Trade was invaluable to us – they answered any questions we had, listened to our concerns and guided us in the right direction when we needed it, so I would absolutely recommend the team to any company in a similar situation.”