May your pipeline runneth over

Speaking of pipelines, in the historic city centre of Bruges, Belgium, a UNESCO heritage site, narrow streets have long made delivery a difficult task for the centuries-old De Halve Maan brewery – and things only got worse once the its bottling plant was moved out of town in 2010. That is, until one day, beer dynasty heir Xavier Vanneste came up with a genius solution that would end all of his company’s transport troubles: a beer pipeline. 

The idea started as a joke, Vanneste says, but it didn’t take long for it to take root in the Bruges community. A satirical television show was even able to convince locals that anyone living along the route could request installation of a tap in their homes. 

Feeding off the hype, Vanneste came up with a plan to lure private investors, mostly retail: a lifetime supply of beer. Anyone who contributed €7,500 or more earned the right to one free 11-ounce bottle of Brugse Zot beer every day for life along with a handful of personalised glasses. The offer was lapped up by local and international beer lovers alike and Vanneste was able to draw about €300,000 in investments for the €4.5 million, two-mile pipeline, set for completion in the coming weeks.

In other news, Infrastructure Investor is currently considering opening its first field office in Belgium.