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Rémy Cointreau Eyes Islay Single Malt Bruichladdich

July 9, 2012

Rémy Cointreau says it has entered into exclusive talks with Islay single malt producer Bruichladdich, with the aim of acquiring the brand. Bruichladdich, which has annual sales of around €15 million ($18.5m), is currently owned by a group of investors including managing director Mark Reynier, who purchased it from Beam in 2000 for £6.5 million ($8m). Reynier recently told Scotland’s The Herald newspaper that the U.S., France, Germany and Scandinavia have been strong areas of growth for the company of late. Analysts expect the suggested deal, which dovetails with Rémy’s stated desire to focus on the premium end of the spirits market, wouldn’t rise above around €43 million ($53m).

Bruichladdich is currently distributed in the U.S. by Winebow, where it sold 4,000 cases in 2011, up from 3,000 in 2010. Winebow CEO Jon Moramarco recently told Shanken News Daily that its growth “has been limited only by supply constraints.” Winebow also rolled out Bruichladdich’s The Botanist gin label in the U.S. last fall.

While lacking a whisky in its own portfolio, Rémy does market the Edrington Group’s Macallan (Speyside) and Highland Park (Orkney) single malts in the U.S. market. The addition of Bruichladdich could complement those brands in Rémy’s U.S. range, although Rémy also said Bruichladdich was attractive for its potential in Asian markets, where Scotch whisky has seen strong growth.

For more background, check out Whisky Advocate editor John Hansell’s take at www.whiskyadvocateblog.com.


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