Runnymede buys Smuttynose Brewing Company

Union Leader Correspondent
March 16. 2018 9:56PM
Jake Broom, Chris Broom Jr., Jason Frechette, and Andrew Hart from Runnymede Investments posed with Rich Lindsay, and Smuttynose founders Joanne Francis and Peter Egelston after the sale. (COURTESY)

HAMPTON — Officials at The Provident Bank announced Friday they have sold Smuttynose Brewing Company to Runnymede Investments for an undisclosed amount of money.

The Provident Bank bought the brewing company for $8.25 million during a foreclosure auction March 9. They were the lead lender for Smuttynose Brewery, which generates more than $10 million a year in revenue, according to spokesman Barbara MacLeod.

The bank’s president, Chuck Withee, said they were impressed by the Runnymede team on a number of levels.

“They are passionate business leaders and great all-around people who are part of our Seacoast community. Runnymede has teamed up with a very professional brewery executive, Rich Lindsay, who knows Smuttynose founder Peter Egelston and the team very well and there is deep, mutual respect. Runnymede Investments has the resources to take this popular brand to new heights,” Withee said in a statement.

Lindsay will serve as Chief Executive Officer. He has held executive roles at Samuel Adams, Tuthilltown Spirits and Night Shift Brewing.

“Our immediate priorities are focused on growth. We’re making plans to add personnel to our sales team and provide them with resources to make them effective in this competitive market. We also plan to make an investment in a canning line that will allow us to participate in a growing segment of the craft beer market,” Lindsay said in a statement.

Egelston said in January that the brewery is capable of producing 75,000 barrels a year but competition driven by the growth of craft breweries on the Seacoast meant they were not operating at full capacity as projected in financial models.

Egelston and his partner, Joanne Francis, said they are eager to start Smuttynose’s next chapter.

“We’ve built a strong foundation with a lot of untapped potential, but circumstances over the last couple of years have held us back. With a strong partner who understands that potential, there’s no limit to what we can now accomplish. We can’t wait to roll up our sleeves and get started,” Francis said.

Runnymede Investments is a family owned and operated investment firm headquartered in North Hampton. They specialize in real estate, private equity and venture capital.

Chris Broom Jr. of Runnymede Investments expressed enthusiasm for having the opportunity to invest in Smuttynose.

“Peter and Joanne have assembled a great team and an impressive production facility. We’re taking a long view and plan on making immediate investments to strengthen the brand and return to growth,” Broom said in a statement.

Smuttynose employs 66 people and is located at the historic Towle Farm in Hampton.

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