A Deeper Dive Into The Fountain Square Brew Co. and New Day Craft Merger

A Deeper Dive Into The Fountain Square Brew Co. and New Day Craft Merger

by Mark E. Lasbury for Indiana On Tap

The trend continues with yet another merger between craft beverage companies. We talked about this recently with the 95Ate5 Brew Pub and St. John Malt Brothers merger and published the press release about the New Day Craft and New Day Craft merger a couple of weeks ago (link is here). Several articles have talked about this trend, and it must be making sense because people continue to join forces.

The best news from the New Day Craft and Fountain Square Brew Co. merger is that both brands will remain. I talked to both Brad Smith from FSBC and Tia Agnew from New Day to get additional details on the merger that weren’t in the recent press release. There is more good news than bad, but I have to admit that I’m going to miss Tia’s and Brett’s enthusiasm for the industry.

image credit: FSBC

Brad assured me that the New Day taproom in Fountain Square is going nowhere; it’s a great neighborhood gathering space and deserves to carry on – and it will. Likewise, all the New Day meads and ciders will continue. Everybody is happy to hear that, especially the fact that Breakfast Magpie and the variants will continue – again straight from Brad Smith’s mouth. The synergy of this deal is palpable, as FSBC has been serving New Day for years, and now the number of offerings will merely increase.

Tia quipped that Indianapolis can’t get rid of she and Brett very easily. She said, “Brett and I will be working with FSBC to help them with the transition over the next couple of months.  After that, we’re on to our new adventures!  We’re keeping our home base here in Indy, and will be focusing on new personal and business pursuits.” My only remaining questions are then – what happens to the Imperial Breakfast Magpie barrels, like the variants for Beard Tax? Having FSBC with a direct line to Imperial Breakfast Magpie barrels as well as sweet corn bourbon barrels from Old 55 Distillery near Lafayette means FSBC has a sweet barrel program in the making. Also, will Meadful Things and Outciders continue next year? This is always one of the best festivals of the year.

image credit: Indianapolis Business Journal

Head brewer Mike Grap and assistant brewer Sam are already learning to make mead under the supervision of Brett and will continue to do so over the next three months. This may result in great surprises; we’ll have mead makers trained by Brett and then released to investigate their own creativity. New producers will definitely go in new directions, and this might result in some amazing new choices from New Day. As Brad told me, “What we’re looking for is great offerings and innovation as the brand continues to grow and develop!”

Finally, it was nice to learn that sales/event guru Holly Cole will be continuing her role with New Day under the new ownership. She will be focusing on southern Indiana, Kentucky and the other markets that New Day has conquered, and will look to expand those markets considerably. Indianapolis and northern Indiana sales will be run out of the Fountain Square location, so we’ll all have to get down to Louisville and New Albany more often to see Holly. Most importantly, it’s nice to know that New Day will live on and is in good hands.

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