Ägräs Distillery closed late on Friday 363,000 euros crowdfunding investment, which will be used to purchase equipment and set up the distillery.
In the country where alcohol sales are still run by a state monopoly and where the largest spirits producer is state-owned 357 investors said “Yes, please” to Ägräs offer on crowdfunding platform Invesdor and they now own roughly a fifth of the company.
The distiller’s success comes as part of the crowdfunding boom where also craft spirits manufacturers have succeeded in raising investment from the public. For example in Britain The Cotswold Distillery, which also combines production of world class ultra-premium whisky, gin and other branded spirits with premier tourist/visitor experience, raised 1 million pounds last month through crowdfunding.
Ägräs Distillery – named after the ancient Finnish God of nature and abundance – is headquartered in Fiskars, Finland, where the production operations and entertainment facilities are situated.
“Finnish nature and no-nonsense purity are at the core of our brand,” the company said in its pitch to investors.
Ägräs plans to produce akvavit, gin, digestif and single malt smoked whisky, which will see daylight in 2020. The first products are due in November 2016.
The distillery will occupy 200 square metres of the distillery’s building in historic Fiskars Village, sharing the facility with craft brewery Rekolan Panimo. Some of the founders are the same for the two companies.
Ägräs will have distilling capacity of close to 50,000 litres per year.
The company is aiming to tap surging demand for products of exciting micro distilleries.
In Finland distillery Teerenpeli has seen substantial growth from 2010 onwards, currently predicting distilling volumes of 160,000 litres in 2016, Ägräs said.
“This very same momentum is enjoyed by our colleagues from Kyrö Distillery and Helsinki Distilling Company, who have achieved great accomplishments with their Gin spirits and are exceeding their 20,000 litre distilling projections,” the company said.