Robert Flynn Jr. (above) joined his father to help start the family business in the early 1960s.
Located in Bangor, Maine Distributors provides a wide variety of beverage products to retail locations in Penobscot, Aroostook, Hancock, Washington, and Piscataquis Counties. For nearly 50 years, the company has demonstrated responsibility for their products and a strong commitment to their employees and the local community.
Maine Distributors was purchased in 1964 by Robert Flynn, Sr., who had been working for the Anheuser-Busch brewery as an area representative. At the same time, Robert “Bob” Flynn, Jr. had just graduated from the University of Maine in Orono and decided to join his father to help start the family business. It wasn't long before Bob became President of the company and recognized the need to expand.
In the first six years, the company invested to meet the increasing demand for their products by doubling the size of their original warehouse. Numerous expansions have occurred since that time including a recent move into a 25,000 square foot warehouse to house non-alcoholic beverages.
Part of the expansion process was made possible by a partnership in 1998 when Robert Flynn Jr. and Scott Solman entered into an agreement to merge Solman Distributors (Caribou, ME) with Maine Distributors (Bangor, ME).
At the time of the merger, Solman Distributors was servicing Aroostook County and carried the same products as Maine Distributors, making the merger and the distribution of products more efficient and better for both business owners. When the companies officially merged in 2000, Scott Solman became Vice President of what would still be called Maine Distributors. Due to the merger, the old Solman Distributors location in Caribou closed, but the warehouse space was donated by Solman Distributors to the Maine National Guard. As a result of the gesture, the City of Caribou and the Maine National Guard proclaimed the day of the donation as “Solman Recognition Day." In the true spirit of Patriotism, Community Pride, and Selfless Dedication, the Solman Building was transferred to the Maine Army National Guard and is the new home of the command of the 1st Battalion 1 52D Field Artillery.
In 2006, Robert Flynn, Jr. retired from Maine Distributors and Scott Solman was named to his current position as the majority owner and President. The wide variety of beverages at Maine Distributors has been one of the main reasons for their growth and expansion. Anheuser-Busch beers, Budweiser, Bud Light, Michelob, Ultra, Natural Light, Busch, Becks, Stella, Bass and others represent 70% of their business. Maine Distributors other beer products include Heineken, Long Trail (a Vermont craft beer) and Black Bear Brewery products.
Since 1980, Maine Distributors has also offered a wide variety of wines.Their current wines include E & J Gallo, Beringer, Bogle, and many others from around the world. The company's non-alcoholic division is rapidly expanding with beverages such as Polar, 7 UP, Crush, Arizona Teas, Snapple, Poland Springs, and Monster Energy Drinks products.
Since entering the distribution business in the early 1960s, Maine Distributors has always remained true to its roots by distributing as many local products as possible. Currently, the company sells Maine beverages that include ELI’s craft sodas, as well as local brews such as Black Bear Brewery Beers which are hand crafted in small batches in the nearby town of Orono. The company takes great pride in their ability to offer these high quality, Maine-made niche beers to their customers.
In addition to the pride Maine Distributors takes in their products, the company also takes pride in being a family business and their responsibility to give back to the community. The company makes numerous donations throughout the year, including support for Maine's Project Graduation programs in local high schools.
"We feel it is important to give back to our communities with our time and resources. We give to numerous organizations, foundations, and causes every year, always doing the best we can," says Scott Solman, owner and president of Maine Distributors.
As owner, Solman also places a strong emphasis on the health and well being of Maine Distributors' employees.
Employee loyalty is a big part of Maine Distributors success. Today, over half the 96 current employees have been working at the distributor for over 10 years. Since 1964, Maine Distributors has provided business owners, visitors and residents from eastern and northern Maine with a wide variety of beverage choices, high quality jobs and numerous charitable contributions to local organizations.