When it was introduced to Indian markets last summer without much advertising, Indian craft beer Bira 91 still managed to become an instant hit, with its mild alcoholic content with a twist of aromas.
But this summer, Bira 91 is out of stock at most retail outlets, simply because the makers couldn’t meet the demand. Most of all, it needs a lot of funds to maintain its supply and get a new bottler after its only bottler in Haryana fell through, Livemint reported on Friday.
Founder of Bira 91, Ankur Jain is now looking for $10 million to end the current gap between its demand and supply.
In January, venture capital firm Sequoia Capital, along with a few other investors, invested in B9 Beverages – the firm that owns Bira.
Speaking to Livemint, Jain said:
Raising money in the current market is not easy. We are glad that investors are willing, and have faith in what we are doing.
Rahul Singh, who is the founder and CEO of Beer Cafe, a popular cafe chain, said Bira has been facing issues “partly because initial discounting that led to fund crunch, and them unprecedented demand leading to supply shortage.”
Competitors, however, maintain that the supply deficit was created to keep the demand for the product alive.
I know what competitors say. Why would I force create a supply shortage? The more I sell, the more money I make. People like Bira and that’s how demand rises every day.Ankur Jain
For now, the company will stick to its Rs 100 price point. “We wanted to create that price segment. We have successfully done that. And every Bira bottle makes money,” Jain added.