24 May 2016
Lion Global Markets has announced that Little Creatures will open its first overseas venue in Kennedy Town, Hong Kong, as it looks to take advantage of growing interest in quality Australian produce and a nascent but fast-developing craft beer scene.
The 140-seat restaurant and bar, to be known simply as Little Creatures, is expected to open later in 2016, complete with a small micro-brewery on site. It will showcase the full range of Little Creatures and White Rabbit beers and the brand’s unique hospitality experience.
Lion Global Markets was launched in August 2015 to grow Lion’s beers, ciders and fine wines in Asia, North America and the Pacific. The Business is led by Matt Tapper, most recently head of marketing for the company’s Beer, Spirits and Wine business in Australia.
Mr Tapper said: “This is an excellent time to increase our investment and focus overseas. Australasian provenance is key. Consumers in Asia are looking for quality products with genuine credentials and we offer a portfolio of high quality products with great heritage and authenticity.
“The Australian dollar has structurally declined, free trade arrangements are improving access to international markets and an Asian middle class is emerging with an appetite to try new things.
“There is already a nascent craft beer scene in China and Hong Kong, but we think the Little Creatures hospitality team can bring something different to the region. As more people experience Little Creatures, we’ll look to achieve distribution in other venues,” said Mr Tapper.
The growth of Lion Global Markets will take a patient, long-term approach to building sustainable brands in its chosen markets.
Mr Tapper said: “We won’t get ahead of ourselves. We want to create a sustainable business that can endure currency and economic fluctuations over the decades to come. That means building enduring brand franchises. Building brands takes time, sustained investment, local market know-how and appropriate sales channels.
“We know what’s possible off an Australian balance sheet and we have no ambition to play in the rapidly consolidating mass market in Asia and we’re not looking to create a big overseas overhead,” Mr Tapper concluded.