FRANKFORT, Ky. (March 30, 2023) – Today, Gov. Andy Beshear announced new growth within Kentucky’s bourbon and spirits industry as Campari Group plans to add a second distillery at its Wild Turkey campus in Lawrenceburg. The company will invest $161 million and create 31 additional jobs in Anderson County.
“This investment by Campari Group adds to the historic momentum the commonwealth is currently experiencing in our signature bourbon and spirits industry,” said Gov. Beshear. “Kentucky is coming off our best year for growth in the spirits industry, with over $2.1 billion in new investments and approximately 700 new jobs for Kentuckians. I want to thank Campari for expanding its Wild Turkey campus in the commonwealth and continuing to invest in Anderson County and the Lawrenceburg community.”
Campari Group will construct a brand-new distillery at the Wild Turkey campus that will be designed to produce 5 million additional proof gallons of Wild Turkey bourbon annually. This will significantly increase the current capacity from 9 million to 14 million proof gallons. The new facility will locate adjacent to the company’s existing distillery. The project also entails an expansion to the waste treatment dry house process to increase processing capacity, doubling the current dry house and waste treatment output. With this investment, Campari Group will also upgrade the current barrel filling operation to handle the increased volumes.
This investment adds to the over $300 million in operation and expansion commitments already financed by Campari Group since the acquisition of the Wild Turkey distillery 14 years ago and comes on the heels of another significant investment announced a few months ago with the acquisition of Wilderness Trail Distillery in Danville. The project is expected to break ground by October 2023 and be completed by the end of July 2025.
“We are delighted to announce this important investment and we appreciate the support received by the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development and the local authorities,” said Ugo Fiorenzo, managing director of Campari America and Canada. “Since 2009, when Campari Group acquired the Wild Turkey Distillery, we have significantly invested in the bourbon category, which now represents Campari Group’s second major leg after the aperitif portfolio. This expansion project confirms, once again, our commitment to this category and it will allow for the continued growth of the Wild Turkey and Russell’s Reserve franchise, both in the United States and internationally.”
Campari Group is a major player in the global spirits industry, with a portfolio of over 50 premium and super premium brands, spreading across global, regional and local priorities. The group was founded in 1860 and today is the sixth-largest player worldwide in the premium spirits industry. Campari Group has a global distribution reach, trading in over 190 nations around the world with leading positions in Europe and the Americas. Campari Group is headquartered in Sesto San Giovanni, Italy, and owns 23 plants worldwide with its own distribution network in 23 countries.
Campari America LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Davide Campari-Milano N.V. Campari America has built a portfolio unrivaled in its quality, innovation and style, making it a top choice among distributors, retailers and consumers. Campari America manages Campari Group's portfolio in the U.S. with leading brands like SKYY Vodka, SKYY Infusions, Grand Marnier, Campari, Aperol, Wild Turkey Kentucky Straight Bourbon, American Honey, Russell’s Reserve, as well as a variety of other whiskey, rum, gin and vodka products.
Campari’s planned project builds on recent bourbon and spirits growth across Kentucky. Since the start of the Beshear administration, the commonwealth’s spirits industry has seen roughly 80 new-location or expansion projects totaling over $3 billion in planned investments and creating more than 1,450 announced full-time jobs. Last year represented the best year on record for growth of Kentucky’s bourbon and spirits industry, with $2.1 billion in new investments expected to create 700 full-time jobs.
Anderson County Judge/Executive Orbrey Gritton mentioned the partnership that has formed between the county and Campari.
“Wild Turkey’s announcement to expand their facilities in Anderson County is evidence that our community is open for business,” said Judge Gritton. “It has been our pleasure to work with their team on expansions in the past and we are thrilled to see our partnership continue with this announcement. This investment from Wild Turkey/Campari is a decision we do not take lightly, and we would like to thank them for trusting our community with their business.”
Lawrenceburg Mayor Troy L. Young thanked local and executive Campari leadership for continuing to grow in the community.
“The City of Lawrenceburg is delighted Campari has continued to invest in our community with their most recent expansion,” said Mayor Young. “We take pride in knowing our community played a small role in assisting with this major project announcement. We have worked hard over recent years to put our community in a position to compete and ultimately win projects of this size. Wild Turkey’s announcement shows our hard work is paying off. We want to thank their local leadership and executive leadership at Campari for choosing to grow in Lawrenceburg and Anderson County.”
Chair of Anderson County Forward Amanda Schoonover showed excitement for the new employment opportunities the expansion is bringing.
“We are excited to support the growth and expansion efforts of Wild Turkey right here in Anderson County,” Schoonover said. “As one of our longest distillery staples in our community, we look forward to the new employment opportunities, the positive economic impact to this community and supporting them in any way we can.”
Campari’s investment and job creation furthers recent economic momentum in the commonwealth, as the state builds back stronger from the effects of the pandemic.
Since the beginning of his administration, Gov. Beshear has announced the creation of 44,500 full-time jobs and more than 840 private-sector new-location and expansion projects totaling $25.6 billion in announced investments.
The Governor has now secured the best two-year period in state history for economic growth.
In 2021, the commonwealth shattered every economic development record in the books. Private-sector new-location and expansion announcements included a record $11.2 billion in total planned investment and commitments to create a record 18,000-plus full-time jobs across the coming years.
That momentum continued strongly into 2022 with 248 new-location and expansion announcements totaling 16,000 full-time jobs behind nearly $10.5 billion in new investment.
The robust job creation has been accompanied by rising wages across the commonwealth. The average incentivized hourly wage in 2022 was $26.78 before benefits, the second-highest mark since 2010 and an 11.5% increase over the previous year.
Gov. Beshear also announced the two largest economic development projects in state history. In September 2021, Gov. Beshear and leaders from Ford Motor Co. and SK Innovation celebrated a transformative $5.8 billion investment that will create 5,000 jobs in Hardin County. And in April 2022, the Governor was joined by leadership at Envision AESC to announce a $2 billion investment that will create 2,000 jobs in Warren County. These announcements solidify Kentucky as the EV battery production capital of the United States.
Kentucky’s success has been noted by both S&P Global Ratings and Fitch Ratings, which have upgraded the state’s financial outlook to positive in recognition of the commonwealth’s surging economy.
Site Selection magazine placed Kentucky second nationwide and first in the South Central region for its annual Governor’s Cup ranking for 2022, which recognizes state-level economic success based on capital investments.
Gov. Beshear’s administration is projected to post the four highest years of budget surpluses in Kentucky history, and the state’s rainy-day fund has a record balance of $2.7 billion.
Recently, Gov. Beshear announced a new “Supply Kentucky” initiative with the goal of boosting job growth, reducing costs and providing more security in the supply chains of our Kentucky companies.
The Governor also announced that Kentucky set the lowest annual unemployment rate in state history for 2022 at 3.9%. This is the lowest rate seen since the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics began reporting state unemployment rates in 1976.
To encourage investment and job growth in the community, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) today preliminarily approved a 10-year incentive agreement with the company under the Kentucky Business Investment program. The performance-based agreement can provide up to $950,000 in tax incentives based on the company’s investment of $161 million and annual targets of:
- Creation and maintenance of 31 Kentucky-resident, full-time jobs across 10 years; and
- Paying an average hourly wage of $32.57 including benefits across those jobs.
Additionally, KEDFA approved Campari for up to $250,000 in tax incentives through the Kentucky Enterprise Initiative Act (KEIA). KEIA allows approved companies to recoup Kentucky sales and use tax on construction costs, building fixtures, equipment used in research and development and electronic processing.
By meeting its annual targets over the agreement term, the company can be eligible to keep a portion of the new tax revenue it generates. The company may claim eligible incentives against its income tax liability and/or wage assessments.
In addition, Campari can receive resources from Kentucky’s workforce service providers. Those include no-cost recruitment and job placement services, reduced-cost customized training and job-training incentives.
For more information on Campari, visit CampariGroup.com.
A detailed community profile for Anderson County can be viewed here.
Information on Kentucky’s economic development efforts and programs is available at CED.ky.gov. Fans of the Cabinet for Economic Development can also join the discussion at facebook.com/CEDkygov, on Twitter @CEDkygov, Instagram @CEDkygov and LinkedIn.
Read about other key updates, actions and information from Gov. Beshear and his administration at governor.ky.gov, kycovid19.ky.gov and the Governor’s official social media accounts Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.