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Bacardi Completes First Phase of $250 Million Investment in Scotch Whisky Production

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Bacardi Completes First Phase of $250 Million Investment in Scotch Whisky Production

Bacardi Completes First Phase of $250 Million Investment in Scotch Whisky Production
October 06
10:22 2010

Bacardi, the largest privately held spirits company in the world, has completed the initial phase of its $250m investment in Scotch whisky production. The investment is to meet growing demand for the group’s portfolio of Dewar’s Scotch whiskies.

Bacardi acquired the Dewar’s brand in 1998. Bacardi, through its John Dewar & Sons subsidiary, employs 300 people at seven locations throughout Scotland. The company currently operates whisky distilleries in Aberfeldy, Macduff, Aultmore, Craigellachie and Royal Brackla with blending, bottling and packaging facilities in Glasgow and maturation facilities in Poniel in Central Scotland.

“Demand for Dewar’s Scotch whiskies has grown significantly in the United States, Asia and other emerging markets and we are excited to have completed the first phase of a new infrastructure project to support higher inventories of maturing whisky and increase our blending, bottling and packing capabilities,” says Seamus McBride, president and chief executive of Bacardi.

Seamus McBride, president and chief executive of Bacardi.

Dewar’s has undertaken a comprehensive redevelopment of an existing site in Parkhead, Glasgow, and has built five new maturation warehouses and a new blend center, as well as installed new bottling lines and packing equipment. The Dewar’s expansion project, which started in July 2007 and was one of the most significant investments ever in the Scotch industry at the time, will be completed in phases over ten years.

The company also purchased more than 100 acres in central Scotland and developed a second maturation facility including six warehouses where Dewar’s ages whisky for flavour and smoothness. Three more aging warehouses are currently under construction and a blending facility will be built next year.

Environment and Energy Management

Dewar’s has planted close to 100,000 indigenous trees including birch, rowan oak and beech to naturally enhance its new maturation facility in central Scotland and complement the surrounding landscape. Another 40,000 more trees will be planted over the next three years. Careful planning was taken for both construction and tree planting to not interfere with bird nesting seasons.

Overall, efficiencies in Dewar’s Scotch production have resulted in energy savings, and usage is down by 11% in distilleries over the past three years. Since fiscal year 2009, water usage has been cut by 17.5 percent, resulting in a savings equivalent to 300 Olympic swimming pools every year.

Returning water back to nature is important as well. At its Aberfeldy distillery treated leftover water is cleaned by passing through a reed bed, an innovative natural filtration process to flow into the River Tay, famed for its salmon and trout fishing.

In addition, the design and construction of the new facilities was undertaken by local suppliers and the vast majority of malted barley, yeast and packaging materials including glass, caps and cases are purchased locally to reduce ‘road miles’ and cut carbon emission impacts.

Another sign of its move into the future, Dewar’s recently unveiled a new modern, bold and cohesive look and package design, visually linking its portfolio of premium blended and single malt Scotch whiskies. The growing demand for Dewar’s has also led to an increase in visitors at the Dewar’s World of Whisky, in Aberfeldy. Opened in 2000, the centre is rated a five-star tourist attraction in Scotland.

In addition to Dewar’s Scotch whisky, the top-selling blended Scotch in the US, the Bacardi brand portfolio consists of more than 200 brands and labels, including: Bacardi rum, the world’s favorite premium rum; Grey Goose vodka, the world-leader in super premium vodka; Bombay Sapphire gin, the top valued and fastest-growing premium gin in the world; Martini vermouth, the world-leader in vermouth; Cazadores blue agave tequila, the top selling premium tequila in the world; and other leading brands.

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