Statement as issued Tuesday by the Steuben County Economic Development Corp:
(Angola, IN) The Angola City Council welcomed Chapman’s Brewing Company to town at its March 18th City Council meeting. On a unanimous vote, the Council approved tax abatement on an estimated investment in real property improvements of $150,000 and new machinery and equipment of $400,000. Chapman’s Brewing Company is a start-up enterprise with plans for ale cider production in Angola, with sales and distribution throughout North America.
Scott Fergusson, dean of the Ketner School of Business at Trine University developed the idea while introducing entrepreneurship as a fundamental skill for all graduates of the School. Fergusson, himself a successful entrepreneur, having created a successful financial information technology firm in Fort Wayne, prior to joining Trine, believes every graduate will benefit from an understanding of business creation and early stage growth.
While Chapman’s is not affiliated with Trine, the company hopes to add two Trine graduates to the payroll following May graduation. In the initial two years, the business plan calls for a total of eight new employees with average annual salaries of $46,600. The company’s first employee is a brew master recruited out of Michigan.
“First and foremost, we want to have a product that will guarantee repeat business. Quality is everything in this market and we intend on serving the highest quality ale cider in the market.”, according to Fergusson. “If we’re able to produce the highest quality cider and meet delivery commitments, our workforce in Angola will easily double in a few short years.”
“I wanted to invest in the business”, stated Angola Mayor, Richard Hickman, “but avoiding any perception of a conflict of interest was more important. They have had no problem finding investors in the business from Angola and the region. Scott and the management team are doing a great job to insure the success of this venture.” Angola and Trine University are both working to spur business creation and growth in the Angola community and the northeast Indiana region. The City recently announced plans for creating of an investment fund through the use of Major Moves proceeds.
The business name, “Chapman” was selected in recognition of local folk hero, John Chapman, aka: “Johnny Appleseed”. Chapman, who died in 1845, is renowned for the many apple orchards he had planted in Ohio and Indiana. Apples were a practical food source necessary for early pioneers in the region.