Ford Reiche anticipates more than half a dozen competitors when he bids on the new state liquor contract. And if his company wins, he wants to build his new warehouse and trucking operation in Lewiston-Auburn.

Reiche sold his Auburn logistics company, Safe Handling, in 2009. He said he’s dedicated the past few years to getting ready to bid on the liquor contract with his new company, Dirigo Spirit.

“We’ve had a large team working full time on this for over a year and a half and we are going to do what we can to deserve to win,” Reiche said this week.

For the first time, the 10-year liquor contract that starts in July 2014 has been split into two parts. Dirigo Spirit plans to bid on both the spirits administration contract and the trade marketing contract.

Reiche called the new, nonrefundable $25,000 fee to submit a bid for both “unusual, but it’s not something we’re going to let get in the way of the other benefits in the legislation.”

He spent time lobbying in Augusta this winter and said the approach to the new contract, an amalgamation of two bills before the Legislature, came out as hoped.

“The legislation that’s now in place is going to bring many tens of millions of dollars to Maine per year,” Reiche said. “This is amazing. For a state as small as Maine, to, just by changing contracts, pick up an extra $30 or $40 million per year, no new expenditure, no new risk, it’s just all new money.”

Winning the contract would require Dirigo Spirit to build or buy a new transportation and warehousing hub next year.

“Any time I can pick my location, it’s going to be Lewiston-Auburn,” Reiche said. “I don’t want to say this will be in Lewiston-Auburn because I’m not certain what some of the dynamics will be, but my experience in Auburn was such that it is my favorite place to do business.”

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