Scotch attracts private equity interest
The booming Scotch whisky market has seen a private equity firm snap up The Loch Lomond Distillery Company for an undisclosed sum.
The deal sees Exponent Private Equity take control of assets including the Loch Lomond distillery in West Dumbartonshire, the Glen Catrine packaging plant in Ayrshire and the Glen Scotia malt distillery in Campbeltown. Alongside these, Exponent has also taken ownership of the Loch Lomond and Glen Scotia single malt brands, the High Commissioner blended Scotch whisky and Glen’s Vodka.
The terms of the acquisition have seen The Loch Lomond Distillery Company’s assets acquired by the newly formed Loch Lomond Group, in which Exponent owns a majority stake with additional investment from the management team.
Loch Lomond Group will be headed up by CEO Colin Matthews, who was previously in charge of Imperial Tobacco’s business across Africa, the Middle East, Asia and India. Former Diageo CFO Nick Rose will step into the role of chairman.
Specialising in identifying UK businesses with strong growth potential, Exponent’s portfolio ranges across sectors including retail, media and financial services.
Explaining how this latest acquisition fits the mould, Matthews explained: “Loch Lomond, Glen Catrine and Glen Scotia have built a sound business platform with brands that perform well in the UK and in a number of international markets.”
He highlighted recent growth in the Scotch whisky market as offering “a great opportunity to develop further the Loch Lomond business, to refresh and expand the product portfolio, and to move into a number of new international markets building on the excellent progress the company has already made.”