Oskar Blues Enters Kansas

It only took about 60 days for Oskar Blues to execute its “aggressive” expansion into five new states, and now the Colorado-based craft brewery is eyeing even more markets.

The company today announced it will enter Kansas on March 10 with the Kansas Craft Alliance (KCA), a partnership of 12 family-owned distributors covering the entire state. The announcement comes on the heels of rollouts in Idaho on Jan. 14, Minnesota on Jan. 25, Delaware on Feb. 17 and Nevada on Feb. 24. The brewery’s total footprint now reaches 34 states.

Brewery spokesman Chad Melis described the start to the new year as “pretty smooth,” albeit “intense.”

“It’s been intense because we’ve been doing them one right after the other, but that’s just how we like to do things here,” he said. “Launching new markets is always fun.”

He added that while the brewery is “really going to focus on following up on these launches” and building out the new markets, additional opportunities in Missouri, West Virginia and Iowa, are on the horizon. Oskar Blues is hoping its entire footprint will include 37 states before the end of the year.

Melis told Brewbound in January that the expansion blitz, which will culminate in the addition of eight new markets total by the time 2014 wraps, was the brainchild of Christopher Russell, the brewery’s director of business development and Lou Romano, the newly hired national sales director.

Russell believes Kansas is a great fit for the Oskar Blues brand as many drinkers in the state share the brewery’s passion for the outdoors and canned offerings, which are more conducive than glass bottles for outdoor activities and sports.

“Our neighboring state of Kansas is a place that we’ve been wanting to get our beer to for quite some time,” he said.

Added Jerrod Nelsen, KCA brand development manager, “Having Oskar Blues part of the KCA family is a great honor.”

Oskar Blues will initially makes its core brands available throughout Kansas beginning with cans and will launch draft beer in the state in late April.

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