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Belgian craft brewery launches first store in Asia

The-Artist-craft-breweryBelgian craft brewery The Artist has landed in Asia with its first store in Hong Kong, to test its concept before entering other markets around the region.

Craft beer company said the 3500sqft Artist House in Causeway Bay’s Fashion Walk shopping centre will offer customers an immersive experience, sell Belgium-brewed craft beer, cocktails and other beverages.

“From a testing perspective, Hong Kong allows young brands to confront their new offering with a diverse crowd of very demanding consumers. This allows us to improve, develop and sharpen our offering to prepare the brand for a wider Asia expansion,” said co-founder Benjamin Cox.

“Hong Kong’s key advantage is its international business environment and mindset which allows easier implementation and early stage execution. We will use the city as our regional base to expand in other Asian places such as Japan, Mainland China, Taiwan and Korea, among others.”

The Artists also has its own in-house micro-brewery and hydroponic aqua-farm allowing customers to make their own beer. Amateur brewers can also customised their beer bottles by adding their own photographs. Cox said the venue is also for events and customers can experience a 360-degree virtual-reality tour of the original brewery in Belgium.

Associate director-general of investment promotion, with InvestHK, Dr Jimmy Chiang, said the opening of The Artist House offers a new craft beer experience to local and regional customers.

“Hong Kong people love craft beer and the city has a high number of international and Mainland Chinese visitors. It is the best place for the company to promote its brand in the region,” Dr Chiang said.

The company decided to launch its brand in Hong Kong due to the fact that the city is a unique platform in Asia.

This story was first published on Inside Retail Asia.

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