It follows the limited-edition Oddbins No.1, a winter ale that was sold in Oddbins’ 35 stores over the Christmas period.
Oddbins decided to ramp up its focus on craft beer after sales in the category grew 179% in 2013.
Ayo Akintola, managing director of Oddbins, said: “The success of Oddbins No 1, made by the East London Brewery, demonstrated that we can leverage the brand at a product level.
“In launching No 1 we have successfully introduced craft ale to a new consumer group that had previously opted for big brand beers.
“Sales of other East London Brewery beers in Oddbins stores have risen 35% since December as a direct result of consumers being introduced to ELB with Oddbins No 1.
“Oddbins No 2 is a collaboration with an innovative brewer in Oxfordshire and we are working with a number of other independent craft beer producers to introduce further Oddbins branded ales later this year.”
Oddbins No 2 costs £2.65 for a 50cl bottle and is is brewed using Tettnang hops, pale malt, lager malt, Vienna malt, wheat and smoked malt.
Oddbins will also sell three other Compass beers as part of its partnership with the brewer: a 6% abv IPA called Kings Shipment, a 3.9% abv wheat beer called Symposium and a 4.8% abv stout called Baltic Night.
UK Craft beers make up 47% of all Oddbins’ beer sales and the company stocks 293 craft beers across its branch network.
Akintola added: “Consumers are increasingly looking for locally made, independent beers that are full of flavour and character and Oddbins is proud to be a major supporter of craft ale producers in the UK. It is becoming a golden age for the industry and beer-lovers have never before enjoyed such a choice. Oddbins is playing a key role in introducing consumers to the wonderful world of craft beers.”
The launch of Oddbins No 2 will be supported with in-store promotions and social media. The company has commenced a national hunt to find an official customer beer taster to assist it in choosing which UK craft ales to stock.
Anyone who thinks they are up to the challenge of drinking beer on Oddbins’ behalf simply have to nominate themselves on Twitter using the hashtag #OddbinsBeer and include @Oddbins to explain why they are the best candidate for the job. The winner will be selected at the end of May.
Oddbins said the role is unpaid, but the right candidate will receive monthly deliveries of cases of craft ales in exchange for providing tasting feedback to Oddbins.
Akintola added: “We are committed to placing our customers at the heart of our business model and recruiting a customer Beer Taster is consistent with that philosophy.”