BY JEFF MAISEY
A year and a half ago it seemed Green Flash Brewing Company was on top of the world, expanding its distribution to all 50 states with fresh product and production breweries on both coasts.
Then in January of this year, the announcement of staff reduction in Virginia Beach, and then the complete closure of the Beach location and distribution pull-back from all markets east of the Mississippi.
Now, the bank has foreclosed upon Green Flash and its recently acquired Alpine Brewing Company.
Following is a letter to shareholders and staff from CEO Mike Hinkley.
Dear GFBC, Inc. Shareholders,
On behalf of myself and the Board of Directors of GFBC, Inc. (the “Company”), I am truly sorry to report that the Company’s senior lender, Comerica Bank, has foreclosed on its loans and sold the assets of the Company (other than the Virginia Beach brewery) to WC IPA LLC through a foreclosure sale which closed on March 30, 2018. As such, the Company no longer owns the Green Flash and Alpine businesses. Comerica Bank is currently conducting a separate process to sell the Virginia Beach brewery.
After a general slowdown in the craft beer industry, coupled with intense competition and a slowdown of our business, we could not service the debt that we took on to build the Virginia Beach brewery, and in early 2018, the Company defaulted on its loans with Comerica Bank. While we took substantial efforts to recapitalize the Company over the past several months, both before and after the bank default, we were ultimately unable to close a transaction.
While the Green Flash and Alpine brands will continue they will do so under new ownership, and GFBC, Inc. and Alpine Beer Company will be wound down and dissolved. I sincerely thank you for your support over the years.
Mike Hinkley CEO GFBC, Inc.