850 Dixie Highway
Louisville, Kentucky 40210
Telephone: (502) 585-1100
Fax: (502) 774-7876
Web site: http://www.brown-forman.com
Founded: 1870 as Brown-Forman Distillery
Sales: $2.13 billion (2000)
Stock Exchanges: New York
Ticker Symbol: BFB
NAIC: 312130 Wineries; 312140 Distilleries; 316991 Luggage Manufacturing; 316993 Personal Leather Good (Except Women’s Handbag and Purse) Manufacturing; 327112 Vitreous China, Fine Earthenware, and Other Pottery Product Manufacturing; 327212 Other Pressed and Blown Glass and Glassware Manufacturing; 339912 Silverware and Hollowware Manufacturing
Brown-Forman Corporation is a diversified producer, marketer, and exporter of alcoholic beverage and consumer products. The full-line distiller markets Jack Daniel’s whiskey, Southern Comfort liqueur, Canadian Mist Canadian whiskey, Early Times and Old Forester bourbon, Glenmorangie Scotch, Finlandia vodka, Korbel champagne and brandy, and Fetzer, Bolla, and Sonoma-Cutrer wines. Brown-Forman also produces and markets crystal, china, silverware, giftware, and collectibles under the Lenox, Gorham, Dansk, and Kirk Stieff brands; as well as Hartmann luggage and leather goods.
George Garvin Brown and John Forman founded the Brown-Forman Distillery in Louisville, Kentucky, in 1870. At the outset, Brown-Forman marketed Old Forester bourbon. Before Brown and Forman marketed their own brand, bourbon had been sold to taverns in barrels, and bartenders decanted the alcohol into special bottles with the name of the tavern on the label. Brown poured the bourbon into bottles at the distillery, corked and sealed the bottles, labeled them, and warned taverns not to buy the bourbon if the seals were broken. As an additional innovation, all of the labels were handwritten and included a guarantee on the quality of the bourbon. Old Forester sold well as a result of these innovations—but Forman was...