Caught up with Jason Sleeman of United Community Bank to talk breweries at the Florida Brewers Guild annual conference. Jason is in charge of craft beverage lending for United Community Bank and has more than $80m out across the US in funding for expansions and startups of breweries, distilleries, cideries, and wineries. His perspective is especially important for cities that hope to attract a brewery to their community.

Some of the things we discuss:

Places where breweries are congregating in clusters, as well as the suburban area opportunities and new development.

What strong brewery locations like North Carolina can means for Florida.

The lender’s perspective toward different brewery market characteristics.

What makes brewery clusters work and more complimentary than competitive with each other.

What is the thing that makes both music cities and brewery cities – Ashville and its subdistricts, Atlanta

What are the pitfalls and local government challenges that can mess up brewery underwriting? Like zoning.

How can a city be brewery friendly, like in Louisville?

What is a great Florida brewery city example for other cities to check out?

How does the outside brewery world view Miami’s market and opportunity?

Shout out to Doral’s Prison Pals Brewery and their story, and Miami’s new distillery!

Are breweries still looking to expand and add new locations?

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