(1) Any person, before engaging in the business of manufacturing, bottling, distributing, selling, or in any way dealing in alcoholic beverages, shall file, with the district licensing personnel of the district of the division in which the place of business for which a license is sought is located, a sworn application in the format prescribed by the division. The applicant must be a legal or business entity, person, or persons and must include all persons, officers, shareholders, and directors of such legal or business entity that have a direct or indirect interest in the business seeking to be licensed under this part. However, the applicant does not include any person that derives revenue from the license solely through a contractual relationship with the licensee, the substance of which contractual relationship is not related to the control of the sale of alcoholic beverages. Before any application is approved, the division may require the applicant to file a set of fingerprints on regular United States Department of Justice forms for herself or himself and for any person or persons interested directly or indirectly with the applicant in the business for which the license is being sought, when required by the division. If the applicant or any person who is interested with the applicant either directly or indirectly in the business or who has a security interest in the license being sought or has a right to a percentage payment from the proceeds of the business, either by lease or otherwise, is not qualified, the division shall deny the application. However, any company regularly traded on a national securities exchange and not over the counter; any insurer, as defined in the Florida Insurance Code; or any bank or savings and loan association chartered by this state, another state, or the United States which has an interest, directly or indirectly, in an alcoholic beverage license is not required to obtain the division’s approval of its officers, directors, or stockholders or any change of such positions or interests. A shopping center with five or more stores, one or more of which has an alcoholic beverage license and is required under a lease common to all shopping center tenants to pay no more than 10 percent of the gross proceeds of the business holding the license to the shopping center, is not considered as having an interest, directly or indirectly, in the license.
(2) All applications for alcoholic beverage licenses for consumption on the premises shall be accompanied by a certificate of the Division of Hotels and Restaurants of the Department of Business and Professional Regulation or the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services or the Department of Health or the county health department that the place of business wherein the business is to be conducted meets all of the sanitary requirements of the state.
(3) A transfer of 10 percent of any financial interest, a change of executive officers or directors, or a divestiture or resignation of such interest or position, in a business holding a vendor’s license permitting the sale of any alcoholic beverages regardless of alcoholic content shall be contingent upon the express approval by the division of the persons holding or acquiring such interest or position except for persons exempted in subsection (1).
(4) Any person, before engaging in the business of exporting alcoholic beverages, must file with the district supervisor of the district of the division in which the exporter’s business is located, a registration on forms provided to the district supervisor by the division. An exporter may not register unless she or he has complied with all appropriate federal regulations, including federal permitting regulations.