Sunday, March 24, 2013

Witch’s Hat Brewing Company Wins 2012 Best Small Business Award from the Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center

Written by  Paul Starr
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Witch's Hat Brewing Company - South Lyon
Photo copyright 2012 Beer Avatar

Twelve companies from around the state of Michigan have been selected to receive the Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center’s (MI-SBTDC) Best Small Business Award. These companies were chosen from over 13,000 small businesses that the MI-SBTDC provided with confidential counseling and training in 2012. The Best Small Business award recipients were identified based on their success in creating jobs, increasing sales, improving their business strategy and their involvement with the MI-SBTDC. These recipients will be honored at the Michigan Celebrates Small Business awards ceremony on May 2, 2013.
Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center“The Best Small Business Award provides the MI-SBTDC network with an opportunity to acknowledge exceptional small businesses that we’ve worked with the previous year,” says Carol Lopucki, State Director of the MI-SBTDC. “We are excited to celebrate their successes.”

When Ryan and Erin Cottongim first opened the doors of Witch’s Hat Brewing Company on Dec. 26, 2011, they found a line of people prepared to wait up to three hours to taste the couple’s craft brews. The brewery regularly serves 9-12 different craft beers in their taproom, while providing product to 20 different bar accounts around the state. The community has quickly rallied around Witch’s Hat providing a loyal base of happy customers.

The Cottongims originally heard about the MI-SBTDC while attending anentrepreneurship meeting through Eastern Michigan University. At this time owning abrewery was still just an idea, but the business plan was beginning to take shape. MISBTDCconsultants were able to help Ryan and Erin further develop their business planand eventually receive the critical funding that allowed Witch’s Hat Brewing Companyto be built.

Witch’s Hat has created 8 jobs and has put South Lyon on the map as a destination forcraft beer lovers. They invite local musicians and bands to provide entertainment andthe walls of the taproom are adorned with pieces of art provided by local artists.Having already outgrown their current facility, Ryan and Erin are beginning to look at afuture location to move to that will allow them to both increase production and provideservice to more customers.

To learn more about Witch’s Hat Brewing Company visit


The Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center provides counseling,business education, information based planning and technology commercialization tonew and existing businesses throughout Michigan’s 83 counties.

The MI-SBTDC is located at the Grand Valley State University, Seidman College ofBusiness in Grand Rapids, Michigan. As host of the MI-SBTDC State Headquarters, theSeidman College of Business oversees the eleven-region MI-SBTDC network.Entrepreneurs and small business owners may access the services of their nearest MISBTDCby calling 616.331.7480 or visiting

Paul Starr

Paul Starr

Paul Starr is the creator of the I'm a Beer Hound and one of the organizer and the driving force behind Art & Craft Beerfest, Lansing Beer Fest, Beerfest at the Ballpark Spring & Fall. When he's not working on Beer Hound he's probably watching the Lions, Tigers or Red Wings. Being a recent new Dad of twins, he doesn't have much extra time these days for mischief.