Gordon Biersch: New Challenges and Opportunities

By Andrea Higuera, Charles Holloway
2002 | Case No. E122
After opening the first Gordon Biersch brewery restaurant in July 1988 in Palo Alto, California, Dan Gordon and Dean Biersch successfully built Gordon Biersch into a $20 million company with restaurants in five locations and a small retail beer business. By early 1995, they aimed to open 20 new restaurants throughout the United States by 1999 and to expand the brewing side of the business. In order to do so, they needed to grow at a much faster pace, which required additional funding and management expertise. Therefore, in November 1995 accepted an investment of $11.2 million from the Fertitta family. In exchange, Dan and Dean gave the Fertittas majority control of the company. This case serves as a continuation to the case Gordon Biersch (Case Number E-2, September 1997) and provides students with an update of what happened at the Gordon Biersch Brewing Company after receiving funding from the Fertitta family in 1995 and up until the time the case was written (Spring 2002).
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