Governor Lee, Commissioner McWhorter Announce Tennessee Hills Distillery to Expand Operations in Sullivan County
· Tennessee-based distillery selects Bristol for new HQ location
· Expansion will create more than 40 new jobs in Northeast Tennessee
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee, Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner Stuart McWhorter and Tennessee Hills Distillery officials announced today the company will invest $21.3 million to expand in Northeast Tennessee by adding a Bristol location to serve as the company’s new headquarters.
The new location will join Tennessee Hills Distillery’s two existing operations in Jonesborough and Johnson City. Through the project, Tennessee Hills Distillery will create 45 new jobs over the next five years as the company constructs an automated distillery, which will be housed in the company’s new headquarters on nearly nine acres off Highway 11 West.
The distillery’s new headquarters will not only specialize in highly automated distilling and packaging but will also house a museum highlighting the history of Tennessee whiskey, NASCAR, music and the distilling process. Once complete, the 35,000-square-foot facility is anticipated to be the fourth largest automated plant in Tennessee.
Founded in Jonesborough, Tennessee, and a subsidiary of Rugged American Spirits, Tennessee Hills Distillery, has been part of the Sullivan and Washington County communities since 2014. The company is well-known for establishing its first distillery in a historic salt house in Tennessee’s oldest town and for partnering with East Tennessee State University to build a brewing and distillation sciences program. With the addition of 45 new jobs in Bristol, the distillery will more than double its employee headcount in Northeast Tennessee.
Since 2018, TNECD has supported more than 30 economic development projects in the Northeast Tennessee region, resulting in approximately 3,500 job commitments and $968 million in capital investment.
“Tennessee’s strong business climate and skilled workforce continue to ensure success among companies like Tennessee Hills Distillery. I thank this Tennessee-brand for its commitment to job creation and look forward to seeing many more years of success in Northeast Tennessee.” – Gov. Bill Lee
“At TNECD, we strive to provide the businesses that call our state home with the tools and resources needed to succeed. We are proud to continue being the home of Tennessee Hills Distillery and believe Bristol and Sullivan County will be the ideal atmosphere for the company’s expansion and new headquarters.” – TNECD Commissioner Stuart McWhorter
“We are so grateful for the support Tennessee Hill Distillery has received the last eight years enabling us to grow into a superregional brand. Our mission is building something all Tennesseans can be proud of. It is an honor to join the Bristol and Sullivan County business communities to grow manufacturing and “experiential” tourism in the region. Thank you, Governor Lee, Commissioner McWhorter, the TNECD team and the leaders of the region for helping empower our quest to provide the nation with a True Taste of Tennessee.” – Tennessee Hills Distillery Founder Stephen Callahan
“On behalf of Sullivan County and Northeast Tennessee, I’d like to congratulate and thank Tennessee Hills Distillery for today’s announced investment in Bristol. The Callahans and the Andrews have formed a team with the determination and capabilities to take their unique Tennessee brand to the nation and world. This company has a definite manufacturing component, but with the tourism and retail aspects as value-adds, it is hard to imagine the full scope of the impact that they will have to our economy and culture. I can’t wait to watch this company’s continued growth Where Tennessee Begins Its Business Day!” – Sullivan County Mayor Richard Venable
“We are incredibly proud to welcome the Rugged American Spirits (RAS) and Tennessee Hills Distillery brands to Bristol, both of which are synonymous with quality and innovation. This project consists of the perfect blend of investment and vision that will not only bring more than 80 new jobs to our community, but that also leans into our cultural heritage, further elevating Bristol as a destination of choice for unique experiences delivered by masters of their craft. We congratulate RAS and Tennessee Hills Distillery on their decision to grow with us here in Bristol.” – Bristol Mayor Mahlon Luttrell
“Congratulations to Tennessee Hills Distillery on this expansion. Bristol is a prime location for their new headquarters, and I am glad to welcome it to our great city. This investment is positive news for the future of the company. It will provide quality jobs and boost our local economy. I appreciate the work of TNECD and local officials for helping facilitate this expansion.” – Sen. Jon Lundberg (R-Bristol)
“East Tennessee has a rich history of producing quality, hand-crafted spirits that have been enjoyed over the world. This expansion by Tennessee Hills Distillery builds upon that tradition. I congratulate the company on this exciting announcement and look forward its successful future in Sullivan County.” – Rep. John Crawford (R-Bristol/Kingsport)
About the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development
The Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development’s mission is to develop strategies that help make Tennessee the No. 1 location in the Southeast for high quality jobs. To grow and strengthen Tennessee, the department seeks to attract new corporate investment to the state and works with Tennessee companies to facilitate expansion and economic growth. Find us on the web: tnecd.com. Follow us on Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. Like us on Facebook. Subscribe to our YouTube channel.
TNECD Media Contact
Public Information Officer