Chivas Brothers agrees to sell
Walker returns to Scotch with deal for distillery
Scotch whisky veteran Billy Walker has returned to the sector by heading up a consortium behind the purchase of a distillery from Pernod Ricard.
He has completed the deal for Glenallachie distillery in Aberlour a year after securing £100 million from the sale of the BenRiach Distillery Company to Jack Daniel’s owner Brown-Forman for £285m.
Joining the consortium are Graham Stevenson, managing director of Inver House Distillers, and Trisha Savage, who worked with Mr Walker at Burn Stewart Distillers and BenRiach.
The deal, which closes at the end of the year, is via the Chivas Brothers subsidiary and will include the Glenallachie single malt brand, the MacNair’s and White Heather blended scotch brands and stocks.
The consortium said its mission was “to be a wholly Scottish-owned, Scottish-based, and truly independent Scotch whisky company, producing excellent whiskies and offering them to the market at premium but affordable prices.”
The Glenallachie distillery was built in 1967 by Mackinlay McPherson, and later bought and mothballed by Invergordon Distillers in 1985.
It was acquired by Pernod Ricard-operated Campbell Distillers in 1989, which expanded the capacity with two extra stills.
Pernod said the deal, for an undisclosed sum, is in line with its “strategy to focus on its priority spirits and wines brands and to adjust its industrial footprint to its needs”.