Constellation Brands (STZ) Takes Minority Stake in Bardstown Bourbon Company

October 17, 2016 9:49 AM EDT

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The Bardstown Bourbon Company (BBCo), the largest new whiskey distillery in the United States, announced today that Constellation Brands acquired a minority stake in the company. This strategic opportunity provides BBCo with a strong platform to develop new brands and create a long-term supply of authentic, Kentucky whiskey, bourbon, and rye.

The Bardstown Bourbon Company recently developed a unique space in the American whiskey market with a first-of-its-kind Collaborative Whiskey, Bourbon, and Rye Distilling Program, which promises to expand the explosive growth of the craft distilling industry. Led by Bourbon Hall of Fame Master Distiller, Steve Nally – a 40-year veteran of the spirits industry and the former Master Distiller of Maker’s Mark – BBCo offers one of the most experienced whiskey-distilling production teams in the industry, with an average of 15+ years of experience working on world-class whiskey brands.

“This is an exciting and unique investment for Constellation, and different than the venture activity we’ve explored to date,” said Ben Dollard, senior vice president and chief growth officer, Constellation Brands. “Investing in a state-of-the-art bourbon facility at Bardstown provides us access to knowledge and production capability to support our emerging premium spirits portfolio over time. At the same time, Bardstown will grow with our investment as well as our experience in the beverage alcohol space, our relationships within the industry and our people.”

BBCo began commercial production in September 2016 and recently announced that it was already preparing to expand its current 1.5 million proof gallon capacity based on the success of the Collaborative Distilling Program. Over time, capacity will be expanded to 6 million proof gallons within the current design. Set on 100 acres of active farmland and adjacent to the Bluegrass Parkway, BBCo’s Napa Valley style destination experience, features a unique and transparent educational experience, high-end tours and tastings, integrated visitors center and event space.

“We are very encouraged to have Constellation as a strategic partner,” said David Mandell, President & CEO of BBCo. “Constellation’s investment and support will further help The Bardstown Bourbon Company reshape the American whiskey market.”

The Bardstown Bourbon Company will continue to operate independently and announced that Peter Loftin, entrepreneur and investor, was named Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Bardstown Bourbon Company.



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