At the end of 2019, Michigan faced a crisis. During the holiday season, a liquor shortage impacted many bars and restaurants throughout the state forcing them to steer customers toward other brands. Now, the distributor responsible for the shortage is paying a hefty fine.

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Republic National Distributing Company has been slapped with a $3 million fine by the Michigan Liquor Control Commission.

Last year, the Livonia-based company faced numerous software issues as it migrated to a new warehouse which was supposed to be high-tech. The so-called state of the art facility cost close to $100 million, but the conversion to the new facility did not go smoothly. The glitches caused numerous delivery delays throughout the state at a busy time of the year for most bars and restaurants.

Republic National Distributing Company then found itself operating out of two warehouses, which caused more delays and therefore frustration for customers.

As RNDC services approximately 1,200 bars and restaurants throughout the state of Michigan, the problems raised a big red flag for the Michigan Liquor Control Commission.

The record $3 million fine levied against the distributor was announced yesterday.

In a statement to the press, Republic National's Joe Gigliotti apologized for the hardship caused by the shortage.

“Unfortunately, as part of the upgrade process, [our] performance was not to MLCC nor RNDC standards,” Gigliotti said. “We are glad to have this matter behind us. We have apologized for the short-term difficulties that start-up problems caused our customers and the state. But we also know RNDC is providing even better service today thanks to our investment in Michigan, and we plan to be an exemplary partner with the state for years to come.”