BrewDog, the Scotland-based brewer, has appointed Des Mulcahy as its UK operations manager.

Australian-born Mulcahy, who is founder of the 'Beer Exposed' festival in London and previously worked in the financial sector, joins BrewDog as the group looks to push ahead with "aggressive expansion plans".

Mulcahy said: "I'm joining at a pivotal time for the company and I'm looking forward to getting stuck in and building a solid operational platform for the brewery to become the largest independent in the UK."

BrewDog, based in Fraserburgh, Scotland, currently employs 18 staff and was founded by old school friends James Watt and Martin Dickie two years ago.

Sales by volume rose 450% in the first quarter of 2009, bucking a UK beer market that saw volume sales fall by 8% during the same period; the biggest quarterly fall for more than a decade, according to the British Beer and Pub Association.

BrewDog beers, including its flagship Punk IPA and newly launched Zeitgeist, are now available in Oddbins stores, as well as the country's top three supermarket chains - Sainsbury's, Tesco and Asda. The group has also signed a deal with pub chain Mitchell & Butlers.

The firm recently recruited Richard McLelland as UK sales manager.