Martin and I (James) were bored of the industrially brewed lagers and stuffy ales that dominated the UK market.
We decided the best way to fix this undesirable predicament was to brew our own beers. Consequently in April 2007 BrewDog was born.
Both only 24 at the time, we leased a building, got some scary bank loans, spent all our money on stainless steel and started making some hardcore craft beers.
We brewed tiny batches, filled bottles by hand and sold our beers at local markets and out of the back of our beat up old van.
Our biggest mission when we set up BrewDog was to make other people as passionate about great craft beer as we are. And that is still our biggest mission today.
Things started getting crazy for us in 2008. They have stayed crazy or perhaps got even crazier ever since.
We somehow persuaded the banks to give us money to buy loads more tanks and a proper bottling machine.
We masterminded the UK's strongest ever beer, Tokyo. This beer resulted in a huge media storm, and, if you believed the headlines, the downfall of Western civilisation.
The Portman Group pretty much banned all of our beers. We started exporting to Sweden, Japan and America. We also got to go on TV with Oz Clark.
And in only the 2nd year of BrewDog we also became Scotland’s largest independent brewery: we worked hard.
We had to put huge new tanks outside the brewery to try and keep up with the demand for our beers as Punk IPA became the UK's fastest growing alternative beer brand and the top selling IPA in Scandinavia.
We also launched Equity for Punks and in a ground-breaking first, we offered people the opportunity to buy shares in our company online. Over 1300 invested and our anti-business business model was born.
We continued to push boundaries and smash people's perceptions of what beer can be by brewing the world's strongest ever beer, Tactical Nuclear Penguin at 32%.
We also aged a beer on the deck of a fishing boat, smashed loads of industrial beers with a golf club and grew our business by 200% (in a recession).
2010 was a veritable rollercoaster for us as we continued our mission to spread the craft beer gospel.
Opening our first craft beer bar in our home town of Aberdeen was a dream come true and we were blown away by the response from customers.
We picked up the Gold Medal for Hardcore IPA at the World Beer Cup and James became Scotland's youngest ever Entrepreneur of the Year.
We brewed a 55% beer and packed it in road kill making it the world's most expensive beer ever as we fused art, craft beer and taxidermy.
We managed to find space for even more fermentation tanks in our increasingly cramped brewery and we also held our first ever AGM for our shareholders in a very snowy Aberdeen in December.
Due to the run-away success of BrewDog Aberdeen we were able to open bars in Edinburgh, Glasgow and a flagship London venue in Camden.
In true BrewDog style we announced our arrival in the capital by driving down Camden High Street in a BrewDog tank.
We also brewed a beer at the bottom of the ocean (seriously), dispensed a 28% beer from a modified deer's head and grew our business over 200% (again!) as we started building our new eco-brewery with demand for our beers reaching scary new levels.
Most significantly we also launched Equity for Punks II and in doing so raised over £2.2m to help us continue to grow and welcomed over 5,000 new shareholders. Martin also dressed up as the Queen for our year end video blog.
2012 was a hell of a year for us at BrewDog. What started off as a dream 5 years ago became a reality as we moved from a brewery we cobbled together on a shoestring to our new world class craft brewery.
6 new BrewDog beer bars opened across the UK with a new flagship site opening in Shoreditch as Diageo infamously cheated us out of an award for our bars which resulted in a global media storm.
We grew revenues by 95% and were awarded the Fastest Growing Company in Scotland and named by The Sunday Times Fast Track 100 as the fastest growing food and drink company in the UK.
We projected ourselves naked onto the houses of parliament, made a special beer for the Olympics, launched the phenomenal Dead Pony Club and hosted 2,000 Equity Punks in Aberdeen for our rock ‘n roll AGM.
2013 was pretty epic. We raised £4.25m through Equity for Punks III, smashing records along the way as we welcomed almost 10,000 new investors from 22 different countries to our community.
We made our own BrewDogs TV show in the US brewing amazing beers with some of America’s best craft brewers. We also opened our first ever international bar in Stockholm by holding a funeral for generic beer in the centre of Sweden’s capital. We were equally flattered and bemused when a fake BrewDog bar opened in China.
We also launched the insanely popular Jack Hammer, doubled the size of our brand new brewery and held daily yoga sessions for all our team in the carpark. One of these is a lie.