Coors Caps Deal With Hardy Bottling

Tuesday, September 19, 2006, Vol. 121, No. 184

5151 E. Raines Road
Memphis, TN 38118
Sale Amount: $6 million

Sale Date: Aug. 31, 2006

Buyer: Chism Hardy Enterprises LLC

Seller: Coors Brewing Co.

Loan Amount: $6.5 million

Loan Date: Sept. 6, 2006

Maturity Date: Sept. 6, 2008

Lender: Sandhurst Asset Management LLC

Details: The former Coors Memphis brewery on 126.5 acres on the south side of Raines Road. Property contains 19 buildings built in 1971, including offices, warehouses, a grain-drying facility, brewhouse, water-treatment facility and more. The Shelby County Assessor's 2006 appraisal was $17.5 million.
The sale between Chism Hardy Enterprises LLC and Denver-based Molson Coors Brewing Co. was finalized Sept. 6. Chism Hardy, a group of investors led by former plant manager Carolyn Hardy, first expressed an interest in purchasing the facility after negotiations between Molson Coors and Wisconsin-based City Brewing Co. collapsed.
Neither Molson nor Chism Hardy would reveal financial terms of the deal. But, in addition to the $6.5 million financed through Sandhurst Asset Management LLC, paperwork for an additional revolving loan was filed by Chism Hardy Aug. 30 with the Tennessee Secretary of State. That document shows indebtedness of $8.5 million through FCC LLC doing business at First Capital, due Aug. 30, 2011. A revolving loan is one in which the borrower can borrow in varying amounts up to a maximum limit; in this case, $8.5 million.
Chism Hardy negotiated an agreement with the former owners that will allow the Memphis facility - now Hardy Bottling Co. - to serve as a distribution center for Coors products. Initially, Hardy Bottling will only warehouse and distribute Coors products. It may once again operate as a brewery-but, that's years into the future, Hardy was quoted as saying in an earlier interview.
Since the crossover of ownership is still in its infancy, there are no immediate plans to make any changes to the physical property, said Robin Hicks, manager of business development for Hardy Bottling.
"Right now, we're in start-up mode," Hicks said. "So, we're going to ramp up over the next three years and hope to have employment of up to 250 employees. Some of those will be some of the employees that are retained from the Coors business."
For more information on the sale of Coors' Memphis brewery, see The Daily News' Sept. 8 Daily Digest at www.memphisdailynews.com.