Cheers To Uncle Nearest, The Black Woman-Owned Premium Whiskey Valued At Almost $1 Billion

Last updated on Mar 6, 2024

Posted on Mar 4, 2024

Fawn Weaver is the CEO and founder of Uncle Nearest, a Black woman-owned premium whiskey brand that has become the fastest-growing American whiskey brand in U.S history, one of the top-selling Black-owned spirits, and the most award-winning American whiskey of 2019 and 2020. 

Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey, which was founded by Weaver in 2016, was named after the first known African American master distiller, Nathan “Nearest” Green. Known to many as Uncle Nearest, he was an enslaved man who mentored Jack Daniel on how to make whiskey. Determined to preserve this legacy, Weaver built a multi-generational brand.

Within its first two years, Uncle Whiskey expanded rapidly from one state to all 50 states and 12 countries. Today, it is ranked among the top 10 ultra-premium American whiskey companies, and is available in more than 30,000 stores, bars, hotels and restaurants across the U.S. The company also proudly boasts a 432-acre distillery in Shelbyville, Tennessee, which attracted 200,000 visitors in 2023. In October 2023, the company also acquired the highly coveted and historic Domaine Saint Martin estate in Cognac, France. 

Weaver recognizes the significance of her accomplishments, as success in the whiskey business has traditionally been confined to a homogenous demographic. In an interview with Business Insider, she said “The only way that we were going to level the playing field is that I'd have to be the hardest-working CEO in this industry of all time.” That’s exactly what she did. Having raised $220 million since its inception, valuing the company at $900 million, Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey is on the verge of becoming a unicorn i.e., being valued at or over $1 billion. 

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