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Taiwan’s taste for whisky raises Distell’s revenue by £23m

Bunnahabhain Stiùireadair whisky.
Bunnahabhain Stiùireadair whisky.

Taiwan is proving to be a lucrative export market for the Scotch whisky of South African-owned Distell International.

Distell’s latest accounts highlight “stronger than expected” sales in the east asian country.

Distell – owner of the Bunnahabhain (Islay), Tobermory (Mull) and Deanston (Perthshire) distilleries – said its single malts “continued to perform strongly” during the year to June 30 2018, while a consolidation of its UK-based whisky, South African wine, cider and cream liqueur export business boosted group earnings.

The company posted pre-tax profits of £10.2 million for the year, up from £9.4m in 2016-17, while revenue rocketed by around £23m to nearly £98.5m.

Distell added a string of Scotch whiskies to its portfolio five years ago when it acquired Burn Stewart Distillers in a £160m deal.

These included the Bunnahabhain, Tobermory, Deanston and Ledaig single malts, and the Black Bottle and Scottish Leader blends.

Distell recently announced a £10.5m refurbishment programme at the home of Bunnahabhain.

Commenting on the group’s latest annual accounts, managing director Fraser Thornton said: “We are very happy with the progress the company is making, particularly the growth in our single malt portfolio”.

Distell’s single malts scooped 11 awards in the recent 2019 San Francisco World Spirits Competition.

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