The Boston Beer Company announced "Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream",
a program whose mission is to partner with low and moderate income
microentrepreneurs in the food and beverage industry and provide the tools they
need to help them grow and succeed. In creating this program, Boston Beer formed
a partnership with ACCION USA, the country’s leading not-for-profit
micro-lending organization that provides critical capital and other types of
assistance to small businesses. Boston Beer and ACCION chose to pilot the
program in New England.
One pillar of the program is Boston Beer’s initial $250,000 commitment to
establish the Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream Micro-Loan Fund at ACCION
USA. This fund will provide much needed capital that is often out of reach to
lower and moderate income microentrepreneurs whose businesses would not be
approved for a bank loan.
Rather than limiting its involvement to simple
financial support, The Boston Beer Company will support its beneficiaries in
a variety of other ways:
• Develop and execute a series of business education and financial literacy
seminars specifically designed to meet the educational needs of food and
• Give microentrepreneurs access to the advice and expertise of Samuel Adams
employees through regular events
• And providing access to networks, markets and mentors that they would
otherwise not be able to access
According to Brewer and Founder Jim Koch, Samuel Adams Brewing the American
Dream formalizes and expands on a series of programs the brewery has
undertaken over the years. “When I started Samuel Adams back in 1984, the
odds were stacked against me, and so as the company grew and became more
successful we naturally identified with other ‘little guys’ who benefited
from a leg up to help achieve their dreams. Over the years we’ve found ways
to help aspiring homebrewers, microbreweries, screenwriters, fiction
writers, and sportscasters. With our partnership with ACCION USA we are now
able to focus on small business owners in our own industry and give them the
support they need to thrive.”
Our Partner: ACCION USA
In seeking a partner for Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream the brewery
turned to ACCION USA to help identify deserving candidates. ACCION USA is a
private, nonprofit organization that serves low and moderate income
individuals, primarily minorities and women, who are unable to access
mainstream business loans and financial services. A pioneer and recognized
leader in the domestic microfinance field, ACCION USA is dedicated to
providing microentrepreneurs and individuals on the economic margin with the
crucial chance to access capital and develop greater financial literacy.
ACCION USA is a member of the U.S. ACCION Network, the largest U.S.
microlending network, with over $210 million lent since inception in 1991.
ACCION USA business loans range from $500-$25,000 and are offered nationwide
via the ACCION USA online lending platform. For more information about
ACCION USA’s small business loan products, visit
Livingston Parsons III, ACCION USA Senior Vice President, expressed
enthusiasm for the new venture, “Every company and every business owner we
work with is different. Their businesses are different; their dreams, their
needs and opportunities, and their skill sets are different. We are thrilled
that The Boston Beer Company wants to fill in the blanks, no matter what
they are. For some of the people we work with, I believe this program will
mean the difference between success and failure.”
In launching the program, ACCION USA and The Boston Beer Company announced
its first beneficiary.
Carlene O’Garro grew up in the City of Boston and graduated from the Boston
Public Schools. She moved to Florida to attend college and considered a
career in law because she was drawn to the financial security it promised.
She realized, however, that her passion was not the law - - but food. While
in an unfulfilling office job that she felt was not helping her build
anything for herself, she enrolled in a newly created program for pastry
chefs at the Cambridge School of Culinary Education. After her graduation
she accepted a grueling, 10-14 hour a day kitchen job in a Boston restaurant
and started marketing her baking efforts for private customers. Soon, she
ran out of hours in the day and made the leap. She started Delectable
Desires but turned to high interest credit cards to finance her endeavor.
Knowing this was a dangerous and short-term solution, through ACCION USA she
applied to the Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream Micro-Loan Fund and
became its first recipient.
Jim Koch founded The Boston Beer Company in 1984 on a shoestring. He brewed
the first batch of Samuel Adams Boston Lager in his kitchen. Every
distributor in Boston turned him down, so he went bar-to-bar selling his
beer and then rented a truck to deliver it. He hoped that beer lovers would
appreciate this rich, full-flavored beer which was unlike anything on the
market at the time. Quietly, and against the odds, a revolution began, and
the American craft beer business was born. In those early days Jim supported
local non-profit organizations in the only way he could: he gave them beer.
As The Boston Beer Company has grown it has created or sponsored many
programs that help others achieve their dreams:
• Beginning in 1995 and continuing today, the company hosts a homebrew
competition and invites homebrewers to submit their best brews. The brewery
then crafts and distributes the winning brews nationally under the name,
• In March 2008 the company launched a hops sharing initiative in response
to a global hops shortage. Through this program, Boston Beer sold tons of
hops at cost to over 100 other small craft brewers to help them source this
critical and largely unavailable brewing ingredient.
• Project Greenlight-in 2001 Samuel Adams partnered with Ben Affleck, Matt
Damon and producer Chris Moore to launch a screenwriting contest to help the
little guys without connections break into moviemaking. The winner, Pete
Jones, had the once in a lifetime opportunity to produce and distribute his
film “Stolen Summer.”
• Announcer for an Inning-in 2003 and 2004 Samuel Adams teamed up with
broadcast partners like NESN and held a contest for aspiring sportscasters
to call an inning of live baseball on TV or on the radio.
Additionally, the Company has longstanding partnerships with other
non-profit partners including the Hands on Network, Cam Neely Foundation for
Cancer Care, the Denis Leary Firefighters Foundation, and the Sean McDonough
Foundation– to name a few.
THE BOSTON BEER COMPANY BACKGROUND
The Boston Beer Company began in 1984 with a generations-old family recipe
that Founder and Brewer Jim Koch uncovered in his father’s attic. After
bringing the recipe to life in his kitchen, Jim brought it to bars in Boston
with the belief that drinkers would appreciate a complex, full-flavored
beer, brewed fresh in America. That beer was Samuel Adams Boston Lager®, and
it helped catalyze what became known as the American craft beer revolution.
Today, the Company brews more than 21 styles of beer. The Company uses the
traditional four vessel brewing process and often takes extra steps like
dry-hopping and a secondary fermentation known as krausening. It
passionately pursues the development of new styles and the perfection of its
classic beers by constantly searching for the world’s finest ingredients.
While resurrecting traditional brewing methods, the Company has earned a
reputation as a pioneer in another revolution, the “extreme beer” movement,
where it seeks to challenge drinkers’ perceptions of what beer can be. The
Boston Beer Company strives to elevate the image of American craft beer by
entering festivals and competitions the world over, and in the past five
years it has won more awards in international beer competitions than any
other brewery in the world. The Company remains independent, and brewing
quality beer remains its single focus. While Samuel Adams is the country’s
largest-selling craft beer, it accounts for just under one percent of the
U.S. beer market. For more information, please visit www.samueladams.com.