Canarchy CEO Exits After 6 Months; Current COO Promoted to President

After about six months as CEO, David Pillsbury is leaving Canarchy Craft Brewery Collective — Oskar Blues’ and Fireman Capital Partners’ consortium of beer companies formed following investments in Cigar City Brewing, Perrin Brewing and Utah Brewers Cooperative — according to a press release.

The reasons behind the departure of Pillsbury, a beer industry outsider who previously served as CEO of the Laser Spine Institute and in leadership roles with the PGA Tour, were not disclosed.

UPDATE: Canarchy spokesman Chad Melis told Brewbound that Pillsbury was offered his “dream job” in the golfing industry and decided to follow his passion back into that field.

In announcing Pillsbury’s exit, Canarchy also announced the promotion of its current chief operating officer, Matt Fraser, to the role of president.

“Matt’s been an integral part of the forward momentum and progress that has been made over the last year, especially the last few months,” Oskar Blues Brewery founder Dale Katechis said, via a press release.

As president and COO, Fraser will be tasked with leading the group’s business operations in collaboration with Canarchy’s breweries.

Melis told Brewbound that Canarchy is not seeking a CEO as Fraser will “take the reins” and fulfill those duties and execute the plan the company has in place. Melis added that Fraser played an integral role in helping align all five of Canarchy’s breweries.

Fraser joined Canarchy in July 2015 as CFO, and he previously worked with investment advisory group Lazard Freres for eight years.

In the press release, Canarchy also shared the company’s year-to-date depletion trends. After the group’s total depletions increased just 0.1 percent in Q4 2017, depletions are up 1.2 percent and 4.4 percent in Q1 and Q2 of 2018, respectively. Meanwhile, May depletions are up nearly 10 percent, the company said.

Driving much of the growth is Cigar City’s Jai Alai IPA, with volumes up 53.6 percent year-to-date and up 70 percent in May. The Cigar City brand is poised for continued growth as Canarchy has expanded its distribution to TexasSouthern California, the Chicago area, Michigan, Minnesota and Arizona earlier this year. And today, the group announced that it will begin selling the Florida brewery’s products in Maryland, Massachusetts and upstate New York via several Sheehan Family Companies wholesalers.

Cigar City products will now be available in a total of 21 states.

A press release with additional information is included below.

CANarchy Craft Brewery Collective Increases Beer Production And Expands Leadership Upon Record Shipments

Matt Fraser Promoted to President and Chief Operating Officer of CANarchy Craft Brewery Collective

LONGMONT, CO — CANarchy, a disruptive collective of independent craft brewers, announced today that Matt Fraser, Chief Operating Officer (COO) has been promoted to include the role of President of CANarchy Craft Brewery Collective, effective immediately. As President and COO of CANarchy, Fraser will lead business operations in collaboration with the brewery partners across the portfolio of craft breweries, including Oskar Blues Brewery, Perrin Brewing, Cigar City Brewing, Squatters Craft Beer and Wasatch Brewery.

An experienced executive in craft beer, Fraser joined the CANarchy Craft Brewery Collective as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) in July 2015 after spending eight years at Lazard Freres in its middle market advisory group. As CFO, Matt led all financial matters in collaboration with CANarchy brewery executives at Oskar Blues Brewery, Perrin Brewing, Cigar City Brewing, Squatters Craft Beer and Wasatch Brewery, including financial reporting and analysis, forecasting and overall budget management.

“Matt’s been an integral part of the forward momentum and progress that has been made over the last year, especially the last few months. This positive momentum will continue with Matt at the helm, together with support from our CANarchy leadership – industry veterans Chris Russell, VP CANarchy Sales, and Patrick Daugherty, CANarchy Chief Marketing Officer, as well as our individual brewery leaders,” said Oskar Blues founder Dale Katechis.

Amongst rollout of updated packaging and increased marketing efforts, CANarchy Craft Brewery Collective has continued strong trends and set shipment records across the country.

Total CANarchy depletion trends are showing steady improvement over the last 3 quarters:

Q4 2017 = +0.1%

Q1 2018 = +1.2%

Q2 2018 = +4.4%

May = +9.8%

Led by growth in the home state of Florida and augmented by new market volume, Jai Alai IPA is on fire at +70% MTD in May and is showing acceleration with trends up from 53.6% YTD

Dale’s Pale Ale is +12% across chain call points even though it is lapping +8.2% growth at this same point a year ago

Jai Alai IPA is now the #29 Brand in off-premise chain and is the 4th best trending top 50 brand in the country

Dale’s Pale Ale is now the #42 Brand in the country in off-premise chain (TTL US Multi Outlet+Conv) and has the 13th best trend

Squatters Craft Beer and Wasatch Brewery Depletion trends show 5% increase over the last six months

Perrin Brewing Flagship brands Black and Grapefruit IPA are both up in May after being down YTD

“CANarchy has delivered on the promise of a new path for the craft beer industry by launching the CANarchy Craft Brewery Collective. We’ve increased our operational efficiency to scale our business and help brewing partners grow while maintaining control of their brand,” said Matt Fraser, President and Chief Operating Officer.

Additionally, David (Pills) Pillsbury will exit the role of Chief Executive Officer. Pills was brought onboard in late 2017 to help lead the executive leadership team to a unified approach to operations excellence within CANarchy.

About CANarchy Craft Brewery Collective

Founded in 2015, CANarchy is a disruptive collective of like-minded brewers dedicated to bringing quality and innovative flavors to beer drinkers in the name of independent craft beer. The portfolio of craft breweries, partially funded by Fireman Capital Partners, including Oskar Blues Brewery, Perrin Brewing Company, Cigar City Brewing, Squatters Craft Beer and Wasatch Brewery, is challenging corporate convention to preserve independent craft beer culture. CANarchy is the #1 provider of American craft beer in a can by bringing value to distributors, retailers and beer drinkers. Cigar City Brewing Jai Alai IPA and Oskar Blues’ Dale’s Pale Ale are currently the #1 and #2 sold craft can six packs in U.S. Grocery. The CANarchy platform brewed nearly 350,000 bbls in 2017, reaching all 50 U.S. states, Washington, D.C., parts of Canada, Puerto Rico, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Spain, France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, the U.K., Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Chile, Brazil, and South Korea.

CANarchy was recently ranked #9 on list of the 2017 Top 50 U.S. Craft Brewers as ranked by sales volume.

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