Craftworks Swot Analysis

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Company Background

Canadian Dan Vroon opened Craftworks in 2010, with the concept of ‘Sell Korean-made north American-style craft beer’.
Mr. Vroon came to Korea in 2000, started to travel around and do research on food and beverage. In 8 years’ time, he learnt about the Korean market and built up a wide connection; he set up his first business in South Korea with several fellows, and opened Craftworks Taphouse in 2010.
Craftworks Taphouse can be said as the first foreign-owned Korean microbrewery and bistro. It was founded with the idea that great quality beer and western food should be available everywhere. Until now, 2014, Craftworks has one main branch in Itaewon, three franchise branches in Jong-no, Gangnam (Seoul) and Bundang, a satellite
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Business and Marketing Strategies in Korea

For Mr. Vroon to make the decision of starting the craft beer business, there were a lot to concern. Koreans typically enjoy soju, the rice base Korean spirit, and Makgeolli together with Korean food. Those two types of alcohol are popular at most of the restaurants in Korean. As beer seems always be the second option, selling beer and expanding beer business was actually a challenge for Mr. Vroon at the first place.

The Culture

Mr. Vroon claimed that it takes too long to learn the entire culture, but through meeting new people and visiting places before he opened the Taphouse, he thinks he is quite positive to Korean’s openness to new things and foreign culture. It is true to doing business is a two-way communication process, not only the seller has to learn about the customers culture and preference, but the customer also need to be open to the seller and be eager to accept the differences. Craftworks is trying to keep its foreign status while showing respect to Korean culture. (i.e. Naming beers with Korean
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Other bar restaurants might not be copying craftworks but the idea of fresh craft beer is now penetrating Korean market and the uniqueness of Craftworks’s beer might not be as strong as it used to be. Another problem for Craftworks is that even after they build their own brewery, the Korean alcohol law would change and become straight, which will lead to production amount limitation. In addition, because of the control of the franchise is not strong enough, the weak performance and service-wise inconsistency might ruin the brand image of Craftworks.
Suggestions/ Recommendation

To ease the production cost problem, Craftworks is now developing its own brewery, and after this big plan, Craftworks will be able to make more designs and variations on their craft beers, which is their competitive advantage in the Korean beer market.
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