Chivas Regal’s values include ‘winning the right way’. How important do you think the process of reaching the final of The Venture by being judged by your fellow social entrepreneurs is, as opposed to a judging panel or public vote?
Being chosen by our fellow social entrepreneurs to represent the UK in the final was a truly humbling experience, as all of them had really inspirational ideas that deserve widespread recognition and support. As such, to have the final judged through supporting each other, rather than simply competing against each other, was a great example of ‘winning the right way’ in action.
How did the idea for Two Fingers Brewing Co. and your work with Prostate Cancer UK come about?
We’re seven friends who met whilst working at an advertising agency in London. Launching Two Fingers Brewing Co. is our way of using our professional skills and love of craft beer to give back. Several of our colleagues were affected by prostate cancer and we realised how high the chances are of us, or someone we care about – or any man – getting it. So, we decided to do something. And since guys love beer so much, we figured it was about time a beer gave back, by giving all its profits to fighting prostate cancer. Basically, we’re too lazy to run the marathon, so we launched a beer brand.
Exports of UK craft beer are on the rise, are you looking at export as both a growth opportunity and an opportunity to increase awareness of prostate cancer around the world?
Definitely. Beer is a global drink and prostate cancer a global concern, so we want to give people all around the world the chance to help mankind, just by drinking beer. Over the last year we’ve had interest in selling Aurelio from distributors in France, Sweden, Finland, Thailand, Ghana, Hong Kong and China – and one of our hopes for The Venture final is that we can use the funds and awareness we raise as a launchpad to kickstart our export operation.
What does it mean to Two Fingers Brewing Co. to be in the final of The Venture? What are you most looking forward to throughout the process? How will winning the competition impact the business?
Being in the final of The Venture is like a dream come true for us. In fact, it’s better than that – as when the seven of us first came up with the idea for Two Fingers Brewing Co., we would never have guessed that our beer and our idea would be on the global stage just three years later. Now, we’re determined to make the most of this really unique opportunity. After all, because we give all our profits to charity, Two Fingers Brewing Co. is always going to be a challenging prospect for traditional investors. So, unique sources of funding like The Venture are vital for a unique social enterprise like ours.
There are things to love at every step of the process, but one thing we’re particularly looking forward to is meeting the other global finalists in San Francisco this summer. We’ve seen their videos and read their stories so we’re really excited about meeting them in person – as we’re clearly all kindred spirits, dedicated to using our time, energy and passion to making a difference.
Winning funding from The Venture could be a massive game-changer for us, that will hopefully take us to the next level in the UK and help with our global expansion. Without The Venture, and other initiatives like it, we’d struggle to help mankind as much, as quickly.
What’s next for Two Fingers Brewing Co?
2015 is off to a flying start and we’re already talking to some really exciting new retailers and wholesalers, plus putting plans together to get Aurelio on tap and expand our range – so we can serve more people in more places, more often. With the prize money we won in the UK final of The Venture we’ve also been able to take steps towards securing our first international trademarks and our goal is to use global final as a springboard to take up the international interest we’ve had – so that people all around the world can help mankind, just by having a beer. First though, we need people to vote for us, so we can raise as much money as possible to fuel our fight against prostate cancer. So if you’ve got five seconds, please do your bit for mankind and vote for us here: https://www.theventure.com/gb/en/finalists/two-fingers-brewing. Cheers!