Emerson's Brewery sold to Lion

Brewery founder Richard Emerson
Brewery founder Richard Emerson
One of Dunedin's best known businesses, Emerson's Brewery, has been sold to brewing giant Lion which will buy 100% of the shares in the award-winning craft beer business.

The deal is effective on November 30.

Brewery founder Richard Emerson said the brewery would remain as a standalone business unit within Lion and would continue to produce the same "great beers" from the same brewery with the same people.

"It's business as usual for Emerson's."

Lion NZ managing director Rory Glass said Emerson's complemented Lion's existing beer portfolio well.

Lion brews Speight's in Dunedin and is the Rattray St brewery is undergoing a multi-million upgrade to cope with increased demand and a lack of capacity in quake-damaged Christchurch.

Very sad

It's very sad, in this economy, when big business wins over small. I guess now we won't drink Emeron's. Small business... stand strong! We support you.


An unmitigated disaster

What's to celebrate? This is an unmitigated disaster for those for whom a drop of 'Emersons' was special. Give it a year, and it will be just another characterless 'generic'.


Well done to everyone at Emerson's. I hope you are all now multi-billionaires - you should be given the quality of your product!
Although it is always of concern when a big multinational takes over, it has been interesting to watch the brewing giants launch boutique brands to stem the tide of drinkers who want beer that tastes great. Sometimes they take an even simpler approach - they buy a great brewery like Richard's and leave it alone to do the job for them.
All the very best for the future of Emerson's - a great local success story.



Nothing good will come from the sale of a small owner operated business to an industry giant, other than a large payout to the owner. If Lion Breweries knew how to make good beer, they would already be making it.


Well done Richard

Well done mate, your beer is the best in New Zealand. Hopefully Lion won't turn it into the standard brew (Lion Red) that they did with Speight's.

ODT/directory - Local Businesses

CompanyLocationBusiness Type
Port Chalmers KindergartenDunedinChildcare & Kindergartens
Lawrence Area SchoolLawrenceSchools
Central Home SupportAlexandraCommunity Groups
Tin Goose CafeAlexandraCafés