Cabinet for Economic Development
Gov. Beshear Announces Expansions of Two Kentucky Distilleries

Press Release Date:  Thursday, April 30, 2009  
Contact Information:  Mandy Lambert, (502) 564-7670  


Frankfort’s Buffalo Trace and Owensboro’s Sazerac North America to add jobs, investment                                               

FRANKFORT, Ky. (April 30, 2009) – Gov. Steve Beshear and Sazerac North America today announced the expansion of two Kentucky distilling operations, located in Frankfort and Owensboro. The expansions represent a combined investment of nearly $28 million and will result in approximately 89 new full-time jobs in the Commonwealth. 

“I’m delighted Sazerac North America has chosen two Kentucky locations for additional investment and job creation as part of their corporate growth strategy,” said Gov. Beshear.  “Sazerac’s long history and tradition in the distilled spirits industry is a perfect match for Kentucky.  The Commonwealth looks forward to continuing our partnership with Sazerac as they evaluate Kentucky for additional investments.” 

In an effort to create efficiencies, increase utilizations and become globally competitive, Sazerac is working with Gov. Beshear’s team to expand the Buffalo Trace Distillery in Frankfort. Under the plan, an estimated $9 million in additional machinery and equipment will be purchased, resulting in the addition of 39 new jobs to the current workforce of 270.

Sazerac, which recently purchased a significant portion of Constellation Spirits, Inc., will also add 300,000 square feet to its Owensboro facility at an estimated cost of $10.5 million.  Additionally, the expansion will require the purchase of $8.25 million in new machinery and equipment. Approximately 50 new jobs will result from the project. Current employment at the facility totals 188. 

“We are very pleased and grateful for the interest and support demonstrated by Gov. Beshear and the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development as Sazerac works to develop and grow its operations in Kentucky,” said Sazerac President and CEO Mark Brown. “This is the first in a series of steps where we are working with the Governor and the Legislature to become more competitive nationally and globally while promoting one of Kentucky’s signature products, bourbon.” 

Buffalo Trace Distillery, Inc. in Frankfort and Sazerac North America in Owensboro were approved for tax benefits under the Kentucky Industrial Development Act for up to $3.28 million today by the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA).   

“Growth and expansion of our existing business community is key to the overall vitality and prosperity of Frankfort and Franklin County. So, we are truly excited today to join with Sazerac in celebrating the expansion of the Buffalo Trace facilities in Franklin County, as well as their Owensboro facility,” said Phil Kerrick, executive director of the Capital Community Economic & Industrial Development Authority. “Sazerac has an exceptional reputation in the spirits industry and is a tremendous corporate citizen in our community.  Their capital investment and commitment to create jobs are a testament to our low-risk business environment.” 

“We are pleased a company of Sazerac’s caliber and quality will expand its operations in our community,” said Nick Brake, president and CEO of the Greater Owensboro Economic Development Corporation. “Sazerac’s investment in Owensboro and resulting job growth can only enhance what has been an exceptional industry in the Daviess County area for many years. The project will provide additional opportunity for an excellent workforce in these tough economic times. We look forward to working with Sazerac as it makes this much anticipated transition.” 

KEDFA also preliminarily approved Sazerac for up to $1.41 million in tax incentives under the Kentucky Jobs Development Act for the possible location of certain administrative offices in Louisville. If successful in bringing the new location to Kentucky, the project would consist of a 10,000 square-foot facility and eventually 51 new full-time employment opportunities. 

“The addition of Sazerac would help enrich Louisville's position as the urban gateway to bourbon country," said Joe Reagan, president and CEO of Greater Louisville Inc.  “We are certainly hopeful the company will choose our city as the site of their administrative offices, bringing even more employment opportunities to Kentucky.” 

Sazerac Company, Inc., founded in 1850 and headquartered in New Orleans, is one of the top 10 producers and marketers of spirits and wines in the United States. The company’s primary distilling, bottling and distribution facilities are located at the Buffalo Trace Distillery in Frankfort with facilities in Owensboro and Bardstown.

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