Bryan

Pacific Brewing Laboratory

San Francisco, CA

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Personal Story

I grew up in Redwood City, CA but went to college in Boston, MA where I got my degree in Biomedical Engineering. My college room mate and I spent most of our last year of college learning how to brew beer at home. I spent the next 4 years in biological sciences. My jobs ranged from DNA sequencing in Iceland to wine chemistry in Sonoma, CA and finally osteoporosis imaging research at UCSF. Soon I realized by dream job in science, engineering, and creativity existed in my hobby of beer brewing. I decided to rent a garage in the heart of San Francisco, purchase some used equipment, and see what I could create.

Business Description

In 2009, I rented a garage in Soma and purchased brewing equipment for the sole purpose of beer experimentation. After almost a year on my own, I met my business partner Patrick over peeling kumquats for a porter style beer I was making. Together we decided to make our hobby into a business. Over the next year we would hold bi-monthly brewing and tasting events in our garage. Popularity increased rapidly. We struggled to meet demand with our small brewing system so we decided to contract with a larger brewery to help us brew much larger batches. Within a few months we became a licensed brewery and in Dec 2011 we will distribute our first keg.

What is the purpose of this loan?

This loan will be used to purchase kegs, malted barley, and hops for our second large batch of beer. We brew the beer ourselves and self distribute to bars and restaurants around San Francisco. This loan will help us reach our goal of higher beer production per month. Eventually we would like to save up to open our own space where locals can come enjoy a pint.

Bryan's loan is endorsed by Jonny Price. The information below explains why his trustee thinks Bryan is a great candidate for a Kiva Zip loan.
What is your relationship with the Borrower?

I met Bryan through a mutual friend in October.

Since then we have met up to discuss the Pacific Brewing Laboratories business.

How did you meet the Borrower?

I met Bryan through our mutual friend.

How long have you known the borrower?

Just over one month.

Why are you endorsing this Borrower?

I am endorsing Bryan for three principal reasons.

Firstly, I think his business plan is sound. I have spent several hours walking through the financial projections with Bryan, and I am convinced that the economics of the business will be strong - the initial investment in the kegs should be paid off within only a few batches of brewing. Pac Brew Lab has also built up a strong following in San Francisco, and was voted the best nano-brewery in the city by SF Weekly.

Secondly, Bryan is clearly extremely passionate about his business, and his industry. He told me that brewing was "a hobby that got out of control", and I think this enthusiasm is a great gauge for success! One tangible example is the hours that Bryan has devoted to hand-crafting the wooden handles that will be used in the bars where the beer is sold.

Thirdly, Pac Brew Lab needs the loan from Kiva Zip, as they have struggled to access capital elsewhere. Bryan got rejected by a bank and another financial institution in the Bay Area, before talking to me about the possibility of getting a Kiva Zip loan.

What are the challenges that you expect this borrower to face in repaying his / her loan?

I think that finding and maintaining a strong customer base of bars and restaurants in San Francisco will be the primary challenge that Pac Brew Lab faces. Having said that, Bryan's enthusiasm and passion is plain to see, and I expect that this will really help him on the sales front.

One real risk is that a batch of brewing turns out bad. Each batch costs thousands of dollars to carry out, so if one fails, it would have a significant negative financial impact on the business. Again however, I think this risk is mitigated by Bryan's hard work, thorough preparation and willingness to seek out expert advice from more experienced brewers.

Please describe the due diligence you have done to ensure that the business plans of this Borrower are sound:

I have met with Bryan in his "laboratory" (a garage in the SOMA area of San Francisco) for several hours over several weeks, to review the financial projections for the loan, and its payback over the next 12 months. Bryan's revenue and cost estimates are detailed, comprehensive and thoroughly-researched.

I have also had a phone conversation with an industry expert with many years of experience in the brewing industry, who is advising Bryan as Pac Brew Lab gets off the ground. This expert was very optimistic about the potential of Pac Brew Lab.

While there are risks inherent in every start-up business, I sincerely believe that Pac Brew Lab will perform very well over the next couple of years, and be able to pay back this Kiva Zip loan.

Why do you think this Borrower has the "character" to repay this loan?

I have only known Bryan for a short while (around a month), but in that time I have found him to be very organized and responsible, as well as extremely friendly and enthusiastic! In addition, a colleague of mine at Kiva, whose opinion I greatly respect, has known Bryan since college, and has great things to say about him.

Please describe how a Kiva Zip loan to this Borrower will have a significant and positive social impact:

Firstly, Bryan has not been able to get a loan so far, and so this Kiva Zip loan will create a genuinely new financial opportunity for Bryan and his business.

Secondly, I believe that Pac Brew Lab has the potential to grow significantly over the next few years, creating a number of jobs for people in the Bay Area.

Thirdly, having tasted both the Squid Ink and the Hibiscus Saison beers, I think that there would be a positive social impact for the people of San Francisco, if they were able to consume these in bars and restaurants around town - they taste great!

What do you think will happen to the Borrower in the event of default? i.e. What are the risks to the Borrower's life?

Clearly, Bryan would be extremely disappointed if the business did not work out, and he could not pay back this loan. He will have devoted a couple of years of his life to the enterprise, which is a significant investment of time, energy and resources. Having said that, Bryan clearly loves what he does, and so even if Pac Brew Lab does not succeed as a company, I do not think his time will have been wasted. I suspect that Bryan's passion for brewing is so great, that even if Pac Brew Lab does not work out, he will see the company as an experiment that teaches him a number of valuable lessons, and look to try again!

Please describe why this Borrower is requesting a loan from Kiva, as opposed to a traditional loan?

Bryan applied for loans from Wells Fargo and a micro-finance institution in the Bay Area, but he was rejected by both organizations, primarily because Pac Brew Lab is just getting started, and there is no track record of revenue.

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ENDED

A loan of $2,000 helps me to buy kegs and ingredients for brewing one batch of beer.

Disbursed Dec 9, 2011
Repayment Term:
12 monthly payments
Grace Period:
N/A
Listed:
Nov 28, 2011
Disbursed:
Dec 9, 2011
Paying Back:
Dec 20, 2011
Ended:
Dec 7, 2012

About Pacific Brewing Laboratory

Industry:
Food production
Years in Operation:
New Business
Website:
pacbrewlab.com
Badges:
Badge repayment gold smallBadge connectedness silver small

What are Borrower Badges?

Borrower Badges are a system designed to recognize and reward borrowers’ engagement with the Kiva Zip website.

There are two types of badges that are tiered like medals: Gold, Silver and Bronze.

  1. 'Repayment badges' are awarded for the on-time repayment of loans.
  2. 'Connectedness badges' are awarded for engagement with the Kiva Zip website.

This loan is endorsed by

Trustee Type:
Individual
Tier:
First Tier trustee
Location:
San Francisco, CA
On Zip Since:
Nov 28, 2011
(44 months)
Loans Endorsed:
2
Total Value:
$7,000
Fundraising/Raised:
0
Paying on Time:
Not enough data
Paying Back Late:
Not enough data
Repaid in Full:
Not enough data
Defaulted:
Not enough data
Repayment Rate:
100%
Why are you endorsing Bryan?

I am endorsing Bryan for three principal reasons.

Firstly, I think his business plan is sound. I have spent several hours walking through the financial projections with Bryan, and I am convinced that the economics of the business will be strong - the initial investment in the kegs should be p...

What are Trustee Badges?

Trustee Badges are a system designed to recognize and reward trustees’ engagement with the Kiva Zip website.

There are two types of badges that are tiered like medals: Gold, Silver and Bronze.

  1. 'Repayment badges' are awarded for the on-time repayment of loans.
  2. 'Connectedness badges' are awarded for engagement with the Kiva Zip website.