Craft beer logistics provider MicroStar Logistics — a Colorado-based company that does everything from managing kegs for 160 customers to overseeing 60,000 intermediate bulk containers — has been acquired by Freeman Spogli & Co. and the Pohlad Family for an undisclosed amount.
MicroStar Chief Executive Officer Laura Honea and the rest of the management team will continue to run the business.
"We are excited to partner with Freeman Spogli and the Pohlad Family as we embark on the next chapter of our growth phase. Our partners' expertise and valuable business experience in the distribution sector will be an important resource as we continue to develop and grow our business," Honea said in a statement.
Working much like a unit load device (ULD) supplier, MicroStar owns more than 1.4 million kegs and works with 1,600 beer distributors to help their wares reach wholesalers. According to a company press release, MicroStar lets customers avoid the investment of purchasing and maintaining kegs and the burden of keg reverse logistics. After a brewery customer fills empty kegs ordered from MicroStar, the customer ships the filled kegs to wholesalers, with MicroStar tracking the shipment, picking up the empty kegs, repairing any broken merchandise, and managing each customer’s keg inventory. MicroStar will even replace kegs when needed.
MicroStar customers include Brooklyn Brewery, Widmer Brothers, Otter Creek Brewing and Shipyard Brewing Company.
"The combination of asset ownership and logistics capabilities offers customers a cost-effective and differentiated value proposition,” Freeman Spogli’s Jon Ralph stated. “We… are pleased to be long-term partners with the management team and look forward to helping MicroStar continue its growth trajectory.” - Jon Ross