History of Southern Glazer's Wine and Spirits

An historic legacy

Historical photo of family

Glazer's beginnings

Louis Glazer moves to Dallas, Texas with his wife Bessie and opens the Jumbo Bottling Company. They distribute flavored soda water from the back of horse-drawn wagons. 

historical photo of business partners

Huge steps forward

With the repeal of Prohibition, three of Louis Glazer’s sons Max, Fritz, and Nolan start Glazer’s Wholesale Distributors. The company is appointed Schlitz Beer distributor for Dallas, population 265,000.

historical photo of Harvey Chaplin

The birth of Southern

Harvey Chaplin, one of the original founders of Southern Wine & Spirits, begins his career in the spirits industry working for Schenley Industries in Manhattan, a leading distilled spirits marketer and the American importer of Dewar's White Label Scotch.


Setting the foundation

Bennet Glazer joins Glazer’s Inc.


Southern Wine & Spirits of America, Inc. is established in Miami.


The next generation

Wayne Chaplin, Harvey’s son, joins Southern. The company becomes the first distributor to gain a statewide network in California and begins more than a decade long period of rapid geographic expansion.


Taking the lead

Southern Wine & Spirits becomes the largest U.S. beverage alcohol wholesaler.

Southern Glazer's distribution center

Investing in technology

Southern Wine & Spirits deploys leading supply chain technologies and establishes the first regional distribution center in the wine and spirits industry in Tracy, California.


Welcoming Southern Glazer's

Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits is formed, creating the only comprehensive North American beverage distribution footprint. 

Diverse female student with backpack

Helping young people make informed choices

We established the Youth Alcohol Awareness & Education Foundation, Inc., devoted to the prevention of underage drinking. 


Expanding volunteerism and stepping into new areas

Great North Distributors, Canada's first national sales broker for legalized-adult use cannabis, is established.  
VolunCheers, an internal program that enables employees to connect with each other online and organize volunteering and fundraising activities, launches nationally.

Woman working on laptop with coffee

A leader in eCommerce

Southern Glazer’s launches of Proof®, an industry-leading B2B eCommerce experience for its customers.

Man and woman extending hands together

Committing to racial equality

With intention, Southern Glazer’s ramps up the work of promoting of racial equality, from philanthropic grants and community education programming, to internal workplace initiatives and programs to support Black- and minority-owned wine and spirits businesses. 

Diverse group holding large check

Celebrating success by giving back

In honor of the five year anniversary of the combination of Southern Wine & Spirits and Glazer's, we shared our success with communities we serve through our "5-50-500" campaign, donating $10,000 to 50 charities for a total of $500,000 in donations to nonprofits selected by our own employees.

Forbes 2022 Best Employers for Diversity

Recognition for diversity

In 2022, Southern Glazer’s was included in Forbes list of Best Employers for Diversity 2022. Commenting on the recognition, CEO Wayne E. Chaplin said, “We work hard to foster a workplace that is welcoming to all members of our Southern Glazer’s FAMILY. It’s important that all of our employees feel comfortable showing up as their most authentic selves.”


International expansion

To create another connection point for suppliers looking for expert route-to-market capabilities in the Atlantic Basin, Southern Glazer’s acquired WEBB  Banks, the leading premium wine and spirits distributor in the Caribbean, Central America, and South America, as well as the travel retail and cruise sector.