Category Archives : Brewery Software


Instock Disposables: Our Hosted Experience

Having dealt with Merlin Business Software since 2004 we have recently upgraded to the latest version of Merlin.  We are delighted we did as the new system has improved our efficiency immensely and has brought great benefits to our customers.

We have also taken a giant leap in technology by having our system hosted.  Business Continuity is an extremely important factor to us and the hosting solution allows us to access our system anywhere there is internet access.  This allows our depots to work independently, without the need for a connection to Head Office, enabling this continuity and giving our customers peace of mind.

Our concerns over system downtime during the upgrade were unfounded since the transition when we moved to the hosting centre was seamless across our multi depot organisation.

We can only thank Merlin for all their efforts and wonder why we waited so long to take the plunge!

Karen Main, IT Manager, Instock Disposables


Merlin customer, Oakham Ales breaks through PBD barrier

Oakham Ales is calculating the costs of continued growth, weighing the additional income from extra sales against a loss of progressive beer duty benefit.

In the end it was no contest. According to co-owner John Bryan, while profit margins will be cut, Oakham’s production will cross the 30,000 hectolitre threshold early in 2014 with expectations of reaching 36,000hl by the end of the year.

Crossing the PBD threshold comes at a cost. Bryan estimated that Oakham will pay an additional £10,000 a month in duty once it changes its declaration.

“So we’re going to be less profitable on what we’re currently doing, something like around £120,000 [a year] if you like, where we’re down over the same period,” he said. “But we’d expect to be making around about £220,000 profit on the extra 6,000 hectolitres so we’re still something like £100,000 in the right direction.”

(more…)


SIBA Launch BeerX Business Awards 2014

This is the second year that SIBA’s Business Awards have been scheduled to coincide with BeerX, SIBA’s annual celebration of all that is Great about British beer and the British independent brewing industry. BeerX 2014 is at iceSheffield – the Yorkshire city’s prestigious local, national and international skating and events venue – from 12-15 March.

The Awards are due to be presented at 3.15pm on Thursday 13 March 2014 , this year in the spacious trade exhibition arena, and are sure to be one of the highlights of a fabulous event which, through its focus on local beer and local craft breweries, will seek to maintain the rising profile of our industry in the political sphere and in the national consciousness.

(more…)


Industry associations unite to demand ‘Better Rates for Pubs’

The BBPA, CAMRA, FLVA, BFBI and BISL have joined together to challenge the burden of business rates on Britain’s pubs, with a direct approach to the Chancellor George Osborne MP on Small Business Rate Relief. This comes as a new Early Day Motion (EDM 599) from Charlotte Leslie MP has been tabled in Parliament.

The EDM calls for an extension of Small Business Rate Relief, better promotion of rural rate relief to encourage take-up, and a review of the revaluation system for pubs.

In their letter to the Chancellor, the associations call for the extension of Small Business Rate Relief beyond April 2014 in the Autumn Statement, removing the potential for a damaging, £27 million rates increase on a recovering sector.

The BBPA has approached a number of industry groups to support the campaign, and has been delighted by the response – with bodies representing brewers, pub companies, tenants, industry suppliers and consumers all engaged with a joint purpose.

(more…)


New report on the impact of the beer duty cut published

A new report, ‘Cheers! Budget 2013 – The impact of the beer duty cut,’ has been launched this week highlighting the wide benefits from the cut in beer duty. The report, published jointly by the British Beer & Pub Association, Campaign for Real Ale and the Society of Independent Brewers, sets out the social and economic benefits alongside case studies from across the sector.

The report outlines how the 2013 Budget was a turning point for the beer and pub industry. From smaller businesses gaining the confidence to take on new staff and buy new equipment to larger businesses investing in and expanding their pub estates, there has been a definite change in industry perceptions.

In terms of jobs created the report highlights that more than 60 per cent of BBPA members have said they would be employing more staff, with examples from JD Wetherspoon of at least 400 new staff and, in the supply chain, Charles Faram the hop merchant taking on seven new employees.

(more…)