Mustang Brewing Co. has reached an agreement to purchase the OKCity Brewing Cooperative, the company announced Tuesday.
Mustang Brewing officials said the three companies operating at the cooperative now — Redbud, Anthem and Black Mesa brewing companies — will continue to do so.
Plans call for Mustang to move a portion of its brewing into the facility, 1354 W Sheridan Ave., as well.
“Moving our brewing operations in-house has always been the plan, it was just a matter of finding the best situation for the company,” Mustang President Tim Schoelen said. “We are extremely excited to enter into this phase of our business plan.”
Mustang Brewing is based in Oklahoma City and has been in business for roughly three and a half years. It produces its beer under contracts at breweries in Wisconsin and Tennessee and at Choc Beer Co. in Krebs.
The plan calls for Mustang to produce 100 percent of its kegs at OKCity Brewing, as well as its recently launched Saddlebag Series line of beers, officials said.
“This will be a gradual process,” Mustang brewmaster Gary Shellman said. “Bringing all keg production in-house is step one. ... Step two will be expanding capacity and adding a bottling and canning line that can accommodate our growing production needs.”
Schoelen said Mustang looks forward to working with the companies already using the brewing setup at OKCity.
“It will operate as a true Oklahoma brewing co-op, not just one in name,” he said. “We plan to further expand the cooperative aspect by bulk-buying materials we share, such as base grain, packaging and chemicals, and ultimately sharing in the savings.”
Anthem president and brewmaster Matt Anthony said the move is an exciting development.
“Mustang's purchase of OKCity means even greater opportunities for collaboration on all levels between the breweries there,” Anthony said. “This truly embodies what the craft beer movement is all about.”
Brad Stumph, sales and marketing director for Black Mesa, said the purchase should help smaller beer companies grow.
“We are excited about the transition because Mustang understands the challenges startup breweries face,” Stumph said. “We believe they will provide the business savvy needed to give the cooperative a stable platform. For Black Mesa, this means that we are able to dedicate 100 percent of the efforts of our nano-brewery to developing and brewing great beer.”
Former OKCity Brewing owner Sibyl Kang said the timing was right for the sale.
“I have enjoyed learning the craft brewing business and want to see it continue to grow,” Kang said. “I believe everything happens for a reason, and when the opportunity presented itself, we knew it was the right thing to do at the right time. I think Mustang will be able to take it to the next level and continue what has been started.”
OKCity was formed with Redbud Brewing Co. as its chief tenant. In August, Redbud brewmaster Chase Healey announced he was leaving the company. Healey resurfaced recently when he was named brewmaster at Prairie Artisan Ales, which started operations in Oklahoma this summer.
At the time of Healey's departure, Kang said Redbud planned to hire a new brewmaster and continue production.
Mustang marketing and promotions manager Eric Pennell said Redbud will remain a part of the cooperative and continue to be distributed throughout Oklahoma, although it has not been determined who will brew the beer.
Schoelen said he plans to add fermenters and tanks to accommodate Mustang's growth and the growth of the other brewers at the cooperative.
He said other brewers could be added to the roster if existing ones transition out.
A sale price for the transaction was not disclosed due to a confidentiality agreement. Oklahoma County property records show the building previously sold in August 2011 for $170,000.