Couple pours retirement funds into brewery

Starting a brewery after retirement
Published: Aug. 8, 2013 at 9:28 AM EDT|Updated: Sep. 7, 2013 at 12:31 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Todd and Suzie Ford skeptically opened the doors to NoDa Brewing Company in 2011.

"We opened in rather tough economic times," said owner Suzie. "Some people thought we were crazy for starting a brewery at that point."

Todd retired two years ago. When the economy soured, life changed for him and for many others, like Ford's wife Suzie, a long-time banker.

The Fords decided to do something about it.

"This is our brew house," said owner Todd.

The couple teamed up with a financial service company,, tapped into their nest egg, poured their savings into a business and started brewing beer.

"To create jobs not only for ourselves, for also for the rest of our staff here," said Todd.

Today, NoDa Brewing Company is a hangout and home to big customers.

"We're in the panther's stadium, we're in the airport, we're going to be in the new knight's stadium," added Suzie.

And they are the makers of creative, flavorful brews.

"We brew essentially 90 to 150 barrels a week," said Todd.

Suzie and Todd's two year brewing anniversary is coming up in October.

"That was a very happy day two years ago this past Saturday when we received our building permit to start the major construction," said Todd pointing to photos of the day they broke ground.

And the couple has no doubt that it was all worth it.

Starting a business with retirement funds is a complicated and possibly risky strategy.

The Fords recommend you first speak to a financial planner before a purchase.

If you are thinking of starting a business with a rollover you can learn more at

Learn more about NoDa Brewing Company:

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