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World Of Beer Maps Major Expansion Plans

May 4, 2015

Craft beer bar chain World of Beer, known for its 500-beer bottle selection and 50 rotating taps per location, continues to expand at a rapid pace. Its latest initiative is entry into the metro New York market, where Manhattan and Hoboken locations are in the works. The Manhattan outpost, slated to open in June, will be situated in the Chelsea neighborhood.

Overall, World of Beer currently has 70 locations, with its deepest penetration in the Florida market, where the chain was founded in Tampa in 2007. Paul Avery, president and CEO of World of Beer Franchising Inc., tells SND the plan is to add about 40 units annually in the coming years, with around 70% of them franchised. In addition to New York, the group recently entered Chicago with five locations and is also adding units in Georgia, Louisiana, Florida, Connecticut and Ohio. By year-end, World of Beer will be present in 26 states, up from 20 currently.

“We’re positioning as a ‘craft tavern,’ not casual dining,” says Avery, who was formerly COO of OSI Restaurant Partners (now Bloomin’ Brands). “Our main competitors are local independent craft bars and gastropubs.” In addition to its mammoth beer list, World of Beer has ramped up its food options lately, as well as its spirits and wine offerings. Spirits, which account for around 20% of beverage alcohol sales, are weighted toward the high-flying whiskey segment, while wine plays a lesser role, comprising only about 2% of drinks sales.

According to Avery and Will Mingo, who owns several franchised units across New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, exclusive beer offerings are a linchpin in the World of Beer strategy. The chain will offer exclusive brews from Dogfish Head, Anchor Brewing and Breckenridge Brewery, among others, in the coming months.

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