The plant produces Pinnacle Vodka

The plant produces Pinnacle Vodka

Beam Inc has sold a US bottling plant 18 months after it took over the facility as part of its Pinnacle Vodka purchase.

Spirits maker Sazerac has bought the Maine plant, however Beam will lease the site until at least the start of next year as it transfers production. Beam is expanding its Frankfort, Kentucky, plant to handle extra production, including the Pinnacle Vodka and Calico Jack Rum currently produced in Maine.

Financial details of the deal were not disclosed. 

Beam started moving production out of the Lewiston, Maine site earlier this year, with reports suggesting up to 160 employees could lose their jobs. Today, however, the pure-play spirits company said the sale to Sazerac will help safeguard jobs at the plant. 

“We told the work force in Lewiston that we would explore different options for the plant, including potentially finding a suitable buyer,” Jim Morehead, Beam's director of manufacturing, said yesterday (16 October). “We couldn’t be more pleased to have Sazerac purchase the plant and to continue operating it as a spirits bottling facility.”

Last year, Sazerac bought a number of brands from the plant's previous owner, White Rock, which ceased trading after selling Pinnacle Vodka and Calico Jack to Beam for US$605m.

Sazerac today said it is looking forward to adding production volume back to the plant.