Newport Craft Distilling, Newport, R.I., announced the acquisition of KEEL Vodka, another Rhode Island brand. This strategic move will see Keel Vodka join Newport Craft’s award-winning portfolio, which includes White Squall Vodka & Gin, Sea Fog Whiskeys and Thomas Tew Rums.

KEEL Vodka, the first premium light spirit founded by Bill Dessel, Tom McGowan and Matt Light, known for its smooth taste and commitment to a balanced lifestyle, has made waves throughout New England and across the country. By joining Newport Craft, KEEL becomes part of a larger Rhode Island-based team, bringing the spirits of the Ocean State to consumers across the country.

KEEL Vodka’s acquisition bolsters Newport Craft’s Vodka offerings and is a complement to the more traditional White Squall Vodka, the company say. The fusion of KEEL’s innovative heritage and Newport Craft’s production expertise enhances the offerings available to meet the needs of diverse consumer preferences, it adds.

With this acquisition, Newport Craft and KEEL reaffirm their commitment to Rhode Island. Production of KEEL Vodka will return to Rhode Island as part of this transaction, increasing job opportunities in the community.

“The KEEL team has found the perfect partner in Newport Craft to help take KEEL to the next level,” said Bill Dessel, founder of KEEL Vodka, in a statement. “It has always been a dream of ours to produce our product ― that was conceived in Rhode Island, in our home state. With this transaction we can finally accomplish that dream. I am excited to get to work alongside the team at Newport Craft, in continuing to spread the KEEL story to new consumers looking to have a more balanced social life.”

Newport Craft CEO Brendan O'Donnell added: “We’re thrilled to welcome KEEL Vodka into the Newport Craft family. This acquisition represents a powerful synergy of passion, expertise, and a shared love for exceptional spirits. The combination of these brands will meaningfully enhance the efforts of both companies and we can't wait to see what Bill and KEEL can do in partnership with Newport Craft.”