They state that necessity is the mother of invention and this is certainly true of Bert “Tito” Beveridge, the founder of the delicious Tito’s vodka. They have recently seen their net worth skyrocket, which is not only based on a steady supply of Tito as I have been drinking since the epidemic started, but it certainly helps! In all seriousness, however, Beveridge had the balls to pick up big-name vodka brands from Texas, Austin, Texas with his ramshackle home-distilled vodka. Would you believe that Beveridge was never ready to make “vodka for dog people”. When he was growing up, he planned to become a doctor. Occasionally in college, he switched tracks for geology and geophysics. This would not be the last time Beveridge changed course.
Beveridge graduated from college in 1984. He soon landed a job with a major Texas-based oil company operating in Venezuela and Colombia. While he was in South America, he began picking wild fruits, fermenting them, and making his own alcoholic beverage.
He returned to Texas a few years later and started his own oil drilling company. Beveridge was making a decent living but did not love his job, so he packed it all up to move to Austin to become an environmental engineer for the oil industry. He grew tired of that and became a mortgage broker. That too did not suit him. It was the early 1990s and Tito was trying to figure out what would bring him happiness and what he was doing with his life.
Along the way, Tito started making small batches of Habano flavored vodka for his friends. Everyone liked her product and asked her to sell it. Beveridge sat down with a pen and paper at midnight after a party and made a list of what he liked to do and was inspired by a good person he saw in the middle of the night. He felt he liked meeting people, was good at sales, and loved making vodka. Tito’s handmade vodka was born in the middle of the night by an alcoholic inspired inspiration.
It was 1993 and there was not a single distillery in the state of Texas. The Texas Alcoholic Beverages Commission (TABC) denied its application for a license on the grounds that Texas had denied the distilleries. This did not harm Tito and he did some digging and found that there was no law against the distillery. The TABC told him that if he could get a federal license, they would approve his state license. It took Tito two years to obtain a federal license. TABC stood by his point and gave him the first license to license liquor in Texas. Now all Tito needed money to buy the equipment needed to make his vodka.
Beveridge learned about micro distilling. He manufactured a pot still from scratch and began perfecting the recipe for Tito’s handmade vodka. He settled on corn as a grain for his vodka. He took his business plan to banks for financing. Banks turned him down. He had no luck with private financing. Tito signed up for 19 credit cards to finance his business. He ran $ 90,000 in charges. He was a one-man operation. He made vodka, bottled it, and loaded it onto a truck. He was transferring his maximum credit card balance from one card to another to stay ahead of his creditors. He sold his first case of vodka in 1997.
In 1998, the head of the cocktail program at the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas saw some excellent reviews of Tito’s handmade vodka, so he bought a few, and The Belgio became one of his first and most important customers. Then, in 2001, Tito’s handmade vodka won the San Francisco World Spirits Competition, beating Gray Goes, Kettle One and other top vodka brands for the coveted top prize, the Double Gold Medal. Tito is no longer a one-man operation, although Beveridge works in the distillery every day, tasting his vodka and managing the business.
After all these years, Beveridge still retains 100% ownership of Tito’s handmade vodka. Based on the company’s current valuation, Burt Beveridge has total assets of $ 9 billion.