‘Brewing the American Dream’ honored (again)

Boston Beer Co. continues to win accolades for its Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream program, started in 2008 to aid low to moderate income small business owners in the food and beverage industry.

Last week the the Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy (CECP) presented its Founder’s Award at the 10th Annual Excellence Awards in Corporate Philanthropy to Boston Beer. The Founder’s Award recognizes a corporation with revenues less than $5 billion that has exhibited outstanding leadership in its category, demonstrated a commitment to innovation, and set benchmarks for measuring the outcomes of its partnerships.

Boston Beer created a partnership with ACCION USA, a pioneering nonprofit micro-lending organization, to establish the Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream program. This program provides small business owners in the food and beverage industry with the tools they need to help them become financially independent, including access to capital. Senior management and employees from Boston Beer host events and share their expertise and insights to provide these entrepreneurs with mentoring and coaching, while ACCION USA provides financial education and manages the loan program funded by Boston Beer.

“When I started The Boston Beer Company I couldn’t get a bank loan or find capital, plus there was so much I didn’t know about starting a small business,” said Boston Beer founder Jim Koch in accepting the award. “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. It became important to me to find a way to give back to other start-ups like mine and create opportunities for them to get funding and advice. I know how useful that would have been in starting Samuel Adams 25 years ago.”

Since its inception two years ago, Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream has provided loans to more than 40 businesses and has helped create or save nearly 300 jobs in New England.