Happy New Year, one and all.
What a year 2016 was for the Veteran Beer Company!
It truly was a highlight-reel twelve months:
Most importantly, 2016 marked the addition of more full-time Veterans to the team than in any year since our inception in 2012. Among those hired in the past year were the first State Director for Wisconsin (disabled Army Veteran, Jason Dietrich) and more recently, a new State Director for Minnesota (Army Veteran Nicole Anderson, replacing Shahn Dilks, who was hired away by another Veteran-owned business).
These additional hires wouldn’t be possible without the growing sales volumes we’ve achieved. In our legacy markets, year-on-year sales are up nearly 40%, and the momentum continues to grow with the addition of new markets in Wisconsin and Michigan.
2016 saw the introduction of another (our fourth) award-winning beer, Bunker Buster brown rye ale. Because it’s a limited edition, winter beer, Bunker Buster was effectively sold out before it was released.
As a limited-edition beer, it got distinctive packaging and was our first foray into cans (16oz).
In 2016 we opened new, key markets with the some of the nation’s most respected distributors in Michigan and Wisconsin.
We established valuable partnerships in 2016 across a wide spectrum, from country music (Billboard Magazine called our bottle openers, co-branded with Ray Scott one of the season’s best gifts) to sports venues (look for our products in Miller Park) to our hometown airline (United).
We once again exceeded our charitable commitment, donating nearly 15% of our top-line revenue to charities that support Veterans in our sales territories and beyond.
And in 2016 we welcomed in new investors in the Veteran Beer Company and its mission. Many of those investors are themselves Veterans, and all are committed to building the brand and expanding the mission.
Roll on 2017!
We have an ambitious plan for the coming year, but we’re well on our way. In 2017 we will achieve great things. Key among them will be:
Return to the Chicago market, bringing our beer back to Chicago and the surrounding suburbs.
This will naturally mean hiring an additional Veteran Director for the Chicago area.
Increasing volume and velocity in our existing markets.
We will hire a Veteran senior sales leader to direct the efforts of the sales team members in Indiana, Michigan, Chicago, Wisconsin and Minnesota.
Reboot our website and our online presence–we’ve gotten feedback that our current URL is a bit cumbersome, so you’ll soon be able to find us at the much shorter and easier www.VetBeerCo.com.
We’ll meet and exceed every one of our goals for the coming year, with your continued support and that of others like you who believe in the brand, the beer, and the mission.