Heineken-owned DB Breweries has added another powerful craft beer player to its family of brands, by purchasing the award-winning Tuatara Brewing Company.

Production will remain on the Kapiti Coast and Wellington, and Tuatara founder and master brewer Carl Vasta gave his assurances that the recipe won’t change. The move is set to take Tuatara to the global stage.

“In order to take things to the next level, we need assistance. That’s why we’ve teamed up with DB,” he said, before adding that he wants to get back to brewing and step out of the business end.

Founded in 2000, over the years Tuatara has become one of the largest craft breweries in the country, with more than 2 million litres of beer produced in 2016. Among its most recent milestones was taking out the supreme award at the Brewers Guild of NZ 2016 Beer Awards. It’s the only brewery to have won supreme twice, the first time in 2008.

According to Andy Routley, managing director of DB Breweries, craft beer is an exciting segment of the Kiwi beer market.

“We are excited by Tuatara for three reasons. Firstly, Carl and his team are passionate about making great beer, and their customers are equally passionate about enjoying it,” Routley said. “Secondly, they have a focus on quality and innovation. And thirdly, we believe that the beers they produce have all the characteristics for their continued success in the wider local and global marketplace.”
Routley also made clear that DB has no intention of ‘messing with a winning formula.’