Moa Brewery ruffling feathers

Moa's new beer Paradise Day Pale Ale is out now in cans.
Moa

Moa's new beer Paradise Day Pale Ale is out now in cans.

Moa – for a brewery named after an extinct bird they manage to ruffle a lot of feathers. 

The latest piece of news-making concerns Moa Group chief executive Geoff Ross and director David Poole increasing their shareholdings in the NZX-listed brewery. 

The purchase – made by the company on behalf of Ross and Poole in lieu of salaries – coincided with Moa more than doubling its share price over the past few months. 

Moa chief executive Geoff Ross, right, with Australian cricket legend Shane Warne. Moa has always aimed itself at the ...
Derek Flynn

Moa chief executive Geoff Ross, right, with Australian cricket legend Shane Warne. Moa has always aimed itself at the blokey end of the craft beer market.

After being asked by NZX to explain the surge in the company's share price late last year, from 52 cents on Christmas Eve to 74 cents on December 30, Moa responded by confirming that it had met the listing rules, which require companies to disclose any material information which may affect their share price.

Two weeks ago, Moa reported to the NZX that Ross now owned an extra 168,000 shares at a cost of $84,555, bringing his holding to 516,200 shares, while Poole now has a total of 132,000 shares, having been given 42,000 shares valued at $21,138. The price of the shares – at around 50 cents – is calculated by what is called volume-weighted average price, or V-WAP.

Ross said the buy-up, which started when shares were around 30c and continued for about six months, "may have" helped lift the price but said other factors were also in play. 

On April 1, two years after launching, Moa shares were at 63 cents – half their initial offer – but more than double where they were when they bottomed out at 27 cents in August last year. For those who have stuck with Moa through a turbulent two years, the lift in share prices is good news.

On the beer front, Moa has just entered the market with its first canned beer, Paradise Day Pale Ale (4.2 per cent ABV) with comes in some lively packaging and is sold in the unusual size of 10-packs. 

Ross says the foray into cans is a response to what Moa sees as a potential growth area for sales.

The cans are being marketed for an outdoors lifestyle – to take on fishing, hunting or tramping trips. Cans are perfect for anyone heading to the hills for a weekend as they are lighter than bottles and there's no risk of broken glass in your backpack or boat.

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The great outdoors feel to the imagery of Paradise Day Pale Ale seems a logical extension of Moa's recent move to take over as the sponsor for Coast to Coast endurance race. 

Moa has always had bloke appeal – but often expressed it poorly. From a sexist prospectus, to a poorly chosen jibe at alleged match-fixing cricketers (one of their employees is Daryl Tuffey, who himself was labelled a match-fixer by former team-mate Lou Vincent before being cleared by Scotland Yard), to an ill-fated and ill-judged attempt to launch a "beer on demand" delivery service, to a short-lived marketing i dea that compared their Marlborough base with Marlboro cigarettes. 

With this latest offering they're in the right territory – and in a positive way.

Twitter: @mjwd

 - Your Weekend

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