Green Flash's Growth Brewed in the Cloud

  • Customers

Mike and Lisa Hinkly, founders of Green Flash Brewery, set out with one goal in mind: to start a brewery with a beer-first mentality. They partnered with brewmaster Chuck Silva and began to develop the definitive West Coast style of beer, thus Green Flash’s West Coast IPA was born in 2002. It was received with open mugs by the craft beer community and launched their company into the innovative brewery they are today.

But by no means was it an easy journey. Over the years, they continued to grow and brew hop-forward beers while battling the struggles of whiteboard, paper and pencil process. In 2012, they outgrew their first brewery’s 14,000-barrel capacity and moved to San Diego, working towards 100,000 barrels annually. This move saw the addition of CFO Steve Goodger, and he knew that if this company was going to keep growing and serving their ever expanding fan base that infrastructure was needed. The current process was unsustainable for future growth.

However, the question remained: How could Green Flash implement more processes when their success is driven by their ability to think outside the box? They constantly experiment with ingredients to brew something new, would that be lost in an effort to optimize book keeping?

Steve knew that he needed to look to the cloud to find a solution that could not only drive their growth but was flexible and embraced their creative mindset.

“With our brewers going from our whiteboard, pencil and paper process to a structured platform, the risk of too much complexity could have jeopardized the entire implementation. Besides, we want our brewers focusing on what they do best—making great beer,” says Steve Goodger.

They saw that an ERP software solution could help them manage their business operations, while maintaining their entrepreneurial spirit. After a four-month implementation period, Green Flash was brewing inside the Plex Manufacturing Cloud.

“I don’t have to deal with the headache of having a big IT system in-house. Plex allows us to focus on what we do best,” Goodger says.

The ability to grow without worrying about servers or a large IT team has opened doors for acquisitions. The grand opening of a second brewery in Virginia Beach is scheduled for 2016. With another 100,000 barrel capacity, Green Flash will be able to share even more of their beer to fans across the globe.