Kaddy might be a new service for the craft beer and wider drinks industry but to trace its origins you have to go a long way back. Back to the schoolyard.
It was there that Rich Coombes and Mike Abbott became mates, many years before their divergent careers led them to the launch of Kaddy. Rich will be a familiar face to many in the beer industry, particularly for Canberra beer drinkers, as he was one of the founders of both Capital Brewing Co and Batlow Cider. Mike, on the other hand, was part of the team that launched Uber in Australia, with Good Beer Week one of the company's first partners back when it only had a few dozen cars operating in Melbourne.
“We’re good mates and were always kicking ideas around,” Rich says.
In April last year, Rich left Capital so he and Mike could focus on one of those ideas and Kaddy was born. Rich says his time working in beer and cider and Mike’s involvement with UberEats when it launched led them to chatting about a problem they wanted to solve for the industry.
“[Mike] came from a more café and restaurants perspective and saw how many multi channels of ordering there were with invoices flying everywhere,” Rich says, pointing out that sending and chasing invoices isn’t really what most people in the beer industry want to be spending time on.
“I came to it from a supply side perspective. As a supplier, cash flow is thin and you’re generally pretty good at dreaming up the next double IPA seasonal release or building a brand, but the back office admin is generally not what you love doing.”
Venue and bottleshops can win one of ten $150 vouchers with Kaddy – head here to enter the competition.
Their new venture is a service that connects venues and bottleshops with breweries, allowing the former to buy a broad range of drinks in one spot while also streamlining procurement from both a buyer and seller’s perspective. Rich says once an order is placed and a brewery delivers beers through Kaddy, they’re paid quickly to decrease their need to chase payments from customers. At the same time, reducing the number of accounts a venue or bottleshop needs to manage simplifies matters at their end.
“Kaddy automatically sends the invoice on behalf of [the brewery], the brewery gets a copy of that invoice, delivers it, and we pay [them] out within three days guaranteed,” he says.
He says it’s a platform that can suit breweries of all shapes and sizes, giving them the opportunity to maintain close control over stock levels. And, alongside breweries, Kaddy works with local distilleries and wineries; at time of writing they'd signed up more than 100 suppliers.
“With any marketplace, scale helps," Rich says. "I think you need critical mass of suppliers and customers.
“For venues to be really excited about coming onto Kaddy you need diversity, breadth and depth. Some customers are looking for the bigger breweries and others are going on there looking for a point of difference.”
In an industry where people wear many hats in a single role (arguably more than ever right now), Rich hopes Kaddy will free up business owners and their staff to focus on what they're best at.
“The feedback we get is that it allows reps to do what they love doing,” he says. “Rather than dealing with sales admin and processing they can focus on education and building their brand.”
You can view other entries in The Collaborators series, which focuses on businesses operating in tandem with the beer world, here.
If you're a venue or bottleshop owner reading this in time, you can enter a competition to win $150 credit with Kaddy. Head here for more.