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MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – An investor out of Los Angeles has purchased the former Brown & Williams tobacco plant on Weaver Road in Macon. The plant has sat vacant for more than 15 years after closing operations in 2006.
Macon-Bibb County Industrial Authority Executive Director Stephen Adams says Industrial Realty Group made the purchase. Adams says the company plans to renovate the plant and put it on the market after seeing so much industrial growth in Macon.
The Brown & Williamson plant opened in Macon in 1977. Employees from the company’s plants in Louisville, Kentucky and Petersburg, Virginia transferred to the site.
When U.S. tobacco sales took a downturn and started to look bleak in 1978, Macon became the company’s primary manufacturing facility. Plant operations were phased out in Louisville, and the Virginia plant eventually closed. The Macon location closed in 2006.
At it’s peak in 1997, Brown & Williamson employed 3,000 people and produced 30 billion cigarettes a year.