How Distribution Partnerships Between Breweries Help Both Sides

It’s something relatively new, that’s only been oncoming in the past few years, but breweries are beginning to team up with each other to meet distribution goals. Instead of going through a third-party distributor, some brands are partnering together in mutually beneficial distribution relationships.

New Image and Station 26 just announced its partnership, in which Station 26 will begin distributing New Image’s portfolio across the Front Range and Summit County in Colorado. Station 26 is expanding its sales and delivery team to encompass New Image distribution as well.

“We’ve known each other for a long time, and we’ve brewed and consumed lots of beers together,” said Station 26 Founder, Justin Baccary. “Our cultures mesh well, and we respect New Image’s commitment to quality and innovation.”

They were strategic in the partnership because the breweries’ beers go together in a way that both can sell at the same retailers.

“This partnership also makes sense from a portfolio perspective — S26 brands and New Image brands are very complementary and don’t overlap much,” Baccary said. “For example, we should be able to sell retailers both our flagship West-coast IPA (Juicy Banger IPA) and New Image’s flagship hazy IPA (Coriolis Effect).”

Station 26 has been successfully self distributing its beer for six years, while growing its sales and delivery teams and hasn’t needed to turn to a traditional beer wholesaler.

“New Image has done an impressive job handling their distribution for the last few years, and now S26 has taken the next step with New Image, which is to add a strong, complementary brand to our distribution portfolio,” Baccary said. “That increases value to our retailers — they can buy two great brands from one sales rep — and increases our efficiency, which allows us to grow our distribution footprint both deeper and wider.”

Not only that, but Station 26 has moved a New Image sales rep and a delivery driver to its payroll so there’s familiarity in the market and the teams can learn from one another.

Both sides will benefit from the added markets. Station 26 has never sold beer in Summit County, but New Image has, which should help Station 26 get more easily into that market. Conversely, New Image’s brand will be distributed along the Front Range for the first time, using Station 26’s resources.

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