Remy Cointreu has acquired the fiercely independent Islay single malt Scotch whisky brand Bruichladdich, marking the French spirits giant first move into the rapidly growing premium single malt Scotch whisky market.
The companies announced the £58 million ($89.9 million) deal in a July 23 press release issued by Remy’s London-based subsidiary, Remy Cointreau UK Ltd.
The Bruichladdich (pronounced Brook Laddie), distillery, one of eight on the Island of Islay and until now the only one not part of a big group, had been owned since December 2000 by a group of private investors led by Mark Reynier of Murray McDavid, who resurrected the Victorian distillery with its unique tall and narrow-necked stills. Today it produces more than 50 different expressions.
“The acquisition of Bruichladdich, a renowned Islay single malt with a rich and exciting heritage, is a great opportunity to enrich our high-end portfolio of brands and to confirm our strategy in the spirits luxury segment,” Remy CEO Jean-Marie Laborde said in a statement. “We look forward to working closely with Bruichladdich’s experienced and passionate management team”.
Sir John Mactaggart, chairman of Bruichladdich said, “This is an excellent transaction for Bruichladdich, the Islay community and a wonderful opportunity for the company to reach its full potential, under the stewardship of Remy Cointreau with their strong distribution network and their experienced brand development. I’m confident that Bruichladdich will establish itself as one of the Scotch whisky industry’s best known and acclaimed premium brands.”
Bruichladdich was founded in 1881 in the western part of the island of Islay and was shuttered in 1994. It was resurrected in 2000. Bruichladdich single malts are distilled, aged and bottled on site. Port Charlotte, a heavily peated expression, and Octomore, the world’s most heavily peated whisky, are also distilled there.
The Rémy Cointreau Group, whose origins date back to 1724, produces Remy Martin and Louis XIII cognacs, Cointeauthe orange-peel liqueur, Metaxa brandy from Greece, Mount Gay Rum from Barbados; Passoa, a passion-fruit liqueur; Saint Remya French brandy among others. Remy’s U.S. distribution portfolio also includes Piper-Heidsieck Champagne, the MacCallan, Famous Grouse and Highland Park Scotch whiskies and Russian Standard Vodka