Southwold brewery Adnams 'exploring' investment options

Adnams brewery
Adnams said it faced "inflationary pressure" due to increased energy and material costs

A 152-year-old brewing company says it has been "exploring" options to secure its financial future.

Adnams, of Southwold, Suffolk, said it faced "inflationary pressure" due to increased energy and material costs.

In a statement, it said it could accept "a fresh injection of capital" into the business from another party or sell some of its freehold assets.

It said its priority as a business was to "stay true to its values of quality, innovation and sustainability".

Bottles of Adnams
Adnams' share price has plunged since the announcement on Monday

In the six months to 30 June, the firm recorded after-tax losses of £2.4m.

"As a result, we've continued to place emphasis on managing our costs and cashflow carefully through various initiatives, whilst focusing on a number of growth opportunities across our business and markets," said chair Jonathan Adnams.

"We are encouraged by improved trading conditions at the start of 2024 and are confident the steps we're taking will drive greater sales growth and restore stronger profitability in the longer-term.

"In the meantime, we're exploring ways to reduce our bank debt to reduce interest payments and further strengthen our balance sheet to support our future growth and provide additional resilience.

"This could include a fresh injection of capital into the business from another party, or the sale of some of our freehold assets to return capital to the business.

The company's share price has fallen by more than 18% since the announcement on Monday, and by more than 70% in the last 12 months.

Last month, the brewer's chief operating officer Dr Karen Hester announced her retirement after 36 years at the company.

As well as its brewery and distillery, Adnams runs 11 pubs and hotels and has a further 34 partner pubs across Suffolk, Norfolk, Cambridgeshire and Essex.

Chris Theobald, who runs The Parrot and Punchbowl in Aldringham, Suffolk, which is not an Adnams pub, said the cost of living crisis had affected the pub trade badly.

"The impact it is having on our industry is something I do not think we have faced, even through Covid-19 times. It is tougher now," he said.

"After lockdown, people wanted to go to the pub and have a meal and a drink. Now people just do not have the money to do that."

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