Heidelberg Distributing Company

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About the company

Heidelberg Distributing is a family owned and operated company that markets and delivers beer, wine, spirits and non-alcohol beverages to retailers in Ohio and Kentucky. Products on Heidelberg trucks come from local suppliers and from suppliers all over the U.S. and the world!

Our roots are humble. Albert W. Vontz, a 22-year-old German immigrant, arrived in Cincinnati in 1907. He was a trained brewer and soon invested his money in two local taverns. After Prohibition ended, he helped open Cincinnati’s Vienna Brewery but eventually sold his shares to his brother-in-law.

When breweries started selling beer beyond their own neighborhoods, Albert drove a truck every day from the Heidelberg Brewery in Covington, Kentucky to deliver the popular Student Prince beer to grocery stores and restaurants in Dayton. The brewery closed in 1946, but Vontz kept the Heidelberg name and found new beer and wine products to distribute.

His only child, Albert Vontz Jr., returned from World War II as a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy and became active in the business. With a degree in economics from the University of Cincinnati, Al looked for opportunities to expand, and the firm has been growing ever since.

In the 1950’s, wine products represented a large part of the operation’s sales. In 1959, Al traveled to St. Louis to meet with the famous August Busch, and he ended up purchasing the Anheuser-Busch branch in Cincinnati for $25,000. In 1961 he purchased the Dayton Budweiser distributorship from another wholesaler. Albert Vontz Jr. passed away in 2002, but not before the company had grown substantially through mergers, acquisitions and industry consolidation.

From “one man, one truck” Heidelberg has grown to:

Nine warehouse and office facilities located in Cincinnati (two companies), Cleveland, Columbus, Dayton, Lorain, Toledo, Youngstown and northern Kentucky

1,600 passionate Associates
18,000 beverages
740 suppliers
Two million square feet of warehouse
300,000 square feet of cooler space
Serving 26,000 retailers throughout Ohio and Kentucky