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Brown-Forman Corporation
Traded as
Founded 1870; 148 years ago (1870)
Headquarters Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.
Key people
Revenue DecreaseUS$3.08 billion (2016)[1]
IncreaseUS$1.53 billion (2016)[1]
IncreaseUS$1.06 billion (2016)[1]
DecreaseUS$4.18 billion (2016)[1]
DecreaseUS$1.56 billion (2016)[1]
Number of employees
4,600 (2016)[2]

The Brown-Forman Corporation is one of the largest American-owned companies in the spirits and wine business.[] Based in Louisville, Kentucky, it manufactures several well known brands throughout the world, including Jack Daniel's, Early Times, Old Forester, Woodford Reserve, Canadian Mist, GlenDronach, BenRiach, Glenglassaugh, Finlandia, Herradura, Korbel, and Chambord. Brown-Forman formerly owned Southern Comfort and Tuaca before selling them off in 2016.

As of fiscal 2016 the company had sales of $3.08 billion.[1] The roughly 40 members of the Brown family, cousins that are descendants of founder George Garvin Brown, control more than 70% of the voting shares[3] and have a net worth of $12.3 billion.[4]


The company was founded in 1870 by George Garvin Brown, a young pharmaceuticals salesman in Louisville, who had the then-novel idea of selling top-grade whiskey in sealed glass bottles.[5]

In 2005, the company sold its Lenox division (one of the oldest and most famous manufacturers of fine china in the United States), which had been acquired in 1983, to Department 56 for $USD 160 million. The income generated by the sale was distributed to the shareholders in the form of a one time special dividend.[]

Part of the company's Louisville complex

In 2006, the company acquired the Chambord liqueur brand (a super-premium black raspberry liqueur produced in France) for $US 255 million.[6][7]

In 2007, the company acquired Tequila Herradura, a Mexican company that produces the Casa Herradura tequila brand (a super-premium tequila produced in Mexico) for $US 776 million,[8] while it also sold its Hartman Luggage division (one of the leaders in the travel goods industry and originally a subdivision of Lenox), to Clarion Capitol Partners. One year later, it sold the Bolla and Fontana Candida Italian wine brands to Gruppo Italiano Vini (GIV). The terms of neither sale were disclosed.[]

In 2011, the company sold Fetzer Vineyards and associated brands to the Chilean wine producer Viña Concha y Toro S.A. for $US 238 million.[9]

In 2016, the Southern Comfort and Tuaca brands were sold to Sazerac Company for $543 Million.[10]

In 2016, Brown-Forman also reached an agreement to purchase The BenRiach Distillery Company Limited for approximately £285 million. The purchase brought GlenDronach, BenRiach, and Glenglassaugh to Brown-Forman's portfolio.[11]

The company is a sponsor of the Brown-Forman Retailer of the Year awards given by the American Beverage Licensees.[12]

Stock information

Brown Forman has two classes of common stock, both of which are traded publicly on the New York Stock Exchange. The Class A shares carry voting privileges and are thinly traded due to control by the Brown family while the Class B shares are Non-voting stock.

China bribery accusations

In 2011, Brown-Forman was accused of illegally subsidizing its distributors in China, and subsequently delaying payment to them as agreed under contract.[13] The Shanghai Administration for Industry and Commerce fined Brown-Forman 2 million renminbi (US$320,000) for illegal subsidization.[14]

2009 environmental rating

In 2009, Newsweek magazine ranked Brown-Forman in their "Green Rankings"[15] which examines 500 of the largest corporations on their environmental track record. Brown-Forman was ranked 63rd out of 500 overall, and was ranked 3rd in the food and beverage industry sector.[16]


American (U.S.) whiskey

Canadian whisky

Scotch whisky





Ready-to-drink coolers

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Brown-Forman Corp, BF.B:NYQ financials". Financial Times. Retrieved 2017. 
  2. ^ "Investors". Brown-Forman. Retrieved 2017. 
  3. ^ "George Garvin Brown IV: A family man rides the bourbon boom". May 1, 2005. Retrieved 2016. 
  4. ^ [NAME] (1970-01-01). "America's Richest Families List". Retrieved . 
  5. ^ Scott C. Martin (2014-12-16). The SAGE Encyclopedia of Alcohol: Social, Cultural, and Historical Perspectives. SAGE Publications. pp. 408-. ISBN 978-1-4833-7438-3. Retrieved . [I]n 1870, whiskey drinks were drawn and sold right out of the barrel. In an innovative marketing move... 
  6. ^ Brown-Forman Adds Chambord to Liquor Cabinet, New York Times Dealbook, March 16, 2006.
  7. ^ Brown-Forman Completes Chambord Acquisition, press release, June 1, 2006.
  8. ^ Chris Mercer (November 29, 2007). "US: Casa Herradura helps offset costs for Brown-Forman Q2: Beverage News & Comment". Retrieved 2010. 
  9. ^ "Concha y Toro Buying Fetzer for $238 Million". Wine Spectator. Retrieved 2012. 
  10. ^ "Southern Comfort brand sold for $543m". The Telegraph. January 14, 2016. Retrieved 2016. 
  11. ^ "Brown-Forman to Acquire the Glendronach, Benriach, AND Glenglassaugh Single Malt Scotch Whiskies". Retrieved 2016. 
  12. ^ "Brown-Forman Retailers of the Year - American Beverage Licensees". Retrieved . 
  13. ^ "Brown-Forman accused of illegal subsidies in China again". Want China Times. Archived from the original on February 1, 2014. Retrieved 2013. 
  14. ^ "Brown-Forman Involved in Bribery Again in Shanghai". SinoCast. Archived from the original on November 18, 2013. Retrieved 2013. 
  15. ^ "Newsweek, Greenest Big Companies in America - The 2009 List". Retrieved 2010. 
  16. ^ "Newsweek - Green Ranking - Brown-Forman". Archived from the original on September 25, 2009. Retrieved 2010. 
  17. ^ "Early Times". Early Times. Retrieved 2010. 
  18. ^ "Love Life. Sip Responsibly". Old Forester. Retrieved 2010. 
  19. ^ "Woodford Reserve". Woodford Reserve. Retrieved 2010. 
  20. ^ "Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey". Archived from the original on July 21, 2010. Retrieved 2010. 
  21. ^ "Canadian Mist". Canadian Mist. Retrieved 2010. 
  22. ^ "Collingwood the toast of the town -- new Canadian whiskey creates a buzz on Georgian Bay". 
  23. ^ "Korbel Champagne Cellars - Welcome". Retrieved 2010. 
  24. ^ "Herradura Tequila, since 1870". Retrieved 2010. 
  25. ^ "Brown Forman targets young women with new 20% abv vodka drink". April 30, 2015. Retrieved 2017. 

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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