Minority-owned business enterprise and investment firm Manna Capital Partners will invest nearly $600 million to build an advanced beverage production and distribution complex in Montgomery, AL. The Louisville, KY-based firm’s Montgomery “beverage park” will create 280 full-time jobs and will be owned and operated by its affiliate, Manna Beverages & Ventures (MB&V).
Founded by Ulysses L. “Junior” Bridgeman and Kevin Attkisson, Manna Capital Partners concentrates on investment and acquisition possibilities across multiple industries, with an emphasis on sustainability and creating opportunities for minority and women-owned businesses.
“We are excited and proud to build our facility in Montgomery with our affiliate, Manna Beverages & Ventures,” said Bridgeman. “Our goal is to be the leading total beverage supply chain company in North America while operating with the highest quality, sustainable capabilities needed to produce beverages for world-class brand owners. MB&V fills the gap for major brands who want to be asset light, nimble and make a difference in their communities by hiring minority and women-owned businesses.”
MB&V selected Montgomery because of the state’s dedication to sustainable supply chain development, and the fast, direct access the location provides to Southeast markets. The facility will encompass more than 180 acres in a new industrial park developed by Montgomery’s economic development team.
The MB&V beverage park will include a 1.7 million-square-foot production facility capable of producing both alcoholic and non-alcoholic products, along with distribution operations. The first bottles are expected to come off the line in 2025. The Montgomery facility will include a research and development center with a bottling line that will provide entrepreneurs, with a focus on women-owned and minority businesses, a place to test new products.
“Manna’s significant investment in Montgomery and its commitment to supporting under-represented enterprises make the company a welcome addition to Alabama’s business community,” said Governor Kay Ivey. “I know Manna’s leadership will find all the ingredients they need for success in our state and look forward to seeing how their growth plans unfold.”
MB&V is working with a consultant to incorporate as many sustainability features as possible into the facility’s design. Through this facility, MB&V is committed to reducing its carbon footprint, minimizing landfill use and impact, and plans to use renewable energy when possible.
Manna Capital Partners created MB&V to be a full-service supply chain partner for national and regional brand portfolios, with an intense focus on startups. It will offer beverage companies a comprehensive beverage packaging platform, combined with warehousing facilities. Contract packing, or co-packing, allows brands of all sizes to sustainably outsource the production and packaging of their products. The market value of this specialized industry was estimated at over $52 billion in 2019, with forecasts calling for that figure to more than double to $119 billion by 2025.
“The U.S. beverage packaging market is expanding rapidly, and we’re happy that Manna has selected Alabama as it moves to capitalize on this trend with its large-scale manufacturing and distribution operation in Montgomery,” said Greg Canfield, Secretary, Alabama Department of Commerce. “This project has solid growth potential and will have a tremendous financial impact on the region.”