While the large domestic beer companies blamed sluggish first quarter sales on bad weather, the country’s 13th largest craft brewery saw positive volume gains, regardless of the climate.
Adam Lambert, the company’s vice president of sales shared earnings details through its first four months of 2013 with Brewbound.com.
In a letter sent to the company’s wholesale partners, Lambert said that year-to-date shipments are up 13 percent while depletions are up 15 percent. The Delaware-based craft brewery said it is on pace to brew and sell 202,000 barrels this year, up from 172,617 in 2012.
“In a very tough first quarter for our industry, we are grateful that you spent the time and energy on making sure we hit our business objectives,” Lambert wrote.
Here are some highlights from the letter:
- The nine beers that represent Dogfish Head’s IPA portfolio grew 22 percent and accounted for 86 percent of total volume.
- Beer-wine hybrids grew 78 percent and accounted for 4 percent of total business.
- Wood-aged beers grew 23 percent and accounted for 3 percent of total business.
- Sales of Aprihop, the company’s spring seasonal, grew 24 percent compared to the previous year.
Data through March 31 from Symphony IRI also indicates strong growth for the company. Total Dogfish Head brands grew 29 percent in volume and 31 percent in dollars on “large base,” Lambert reported. 60 Minute IPA grew 24 percent, while 90 Minute IPA — the company’s fastest growing brand — grew 42 percent, even with an average case price of $63.30. If those trends continue, 90 Minute will grow into the company’s number one dollar-performing brand in the grocery channel by the end of the year.
The company sells 49 percent of its beer in six,“close-to-home” states (Delaware, New Jersey, Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and New York).
Lambert is optimistic that growth trends will continue throughout the year.
“Overall, in a tough first few months for the industry, our beers continue to perform strong in the ever-growing craft category driving more profits to your bottom line,” he wrote. “It’s our goal to be your most valuable supplier. We will do this by bringing you the most innovative and highest quality beers, redefining segments in our category, business plans that drive the key elements to success, people that will assist and enhance your business, and one of the highest dollar profit per case beer portfolio’s in the world.”