Quintessential raises €28m for Dublin distillery

17 July, 2017

Quintessential Brands has announced a €18.3m investment by Stock Spirits in its Dublin Liberties Distillery Company.

Quintessential's Quintessential Brands Irish Whiskey Limited (QBIW) owns The Dublin Liberties and The Dubliner Irish whiskey brands.

Last year it announced the construction of a new whiskey distillery and visitor centre in the Liberties area of Dublin.

In return for the investment, Stock gets a 25% equity interest in QBIW. As part of the total €28 million investment in QBIW, a comprehensive €10 million banking facility has been completed with Wells Fargo Bank.

Stock Spirits Group is an owner and producer of premium branded spirits and liqueurs that are principally sold in central and eastern Europe. The investment by Stock Spirits comprises an initial €15m cash plus a further deferred cash consideration over a five-year period for the 25% equity interest.

QBIW will use the investment primarily to complete the construction and fit out of the Dublin Liberties Distillery on Mill Street in Dublin 8, as well as to accelerate advertising and promotional investment in the brands underpinned by significant investment in stock maturation.

The company says the Dubliner Irish whiskey brand was recently confirmed as the fastest-growing Irish whiskey globally. The range of products in The Dublin Liberties and The Dubliner Irish whiskey portfolios currently sell in more than 30 countries with sales in excess of 32,000 9-litre cases in the 12 months to March 2017.

Quintessential Brands acquired the Dublin Liberties Distillery in 2016 and has over the past 12 months developed designs for a distillery and visitors’ centre in the heart of Dublin. Construction on the Dublin Liberties Distillery started in January 2017 and it is due to open in 2018.

The QBIW senior executive management team of Darryl McNally (general manager and master distiller), Colin O’Neill (chief financial officer) and Sinead O’Frighil (global marketing director) will continue to lead the Dublin Liberties Distillery Company. It will be chaired by Quintessential Brands’ Group co-founder Warren Scott. 

Scott said “We are a brand-led business and both The Dublin Liberties and The Dubliner Irish Whiskey have developed great traction in more than 30 markets with significant potential for further growth and range expansion in the coming years.

“We are delighted to be working with Stock Spirits and with the completion of the Dublin Liberties Distillery we will create a home for the brands and an exciting new visitor experience in the heart of Dublin”, said Scott.

The Dublin Liberties distillery master distiller and general manager Darryl McNally said: “The growth in Irish whiskey has been phenomenal in recent years and shows no sign of abating.  Consumers want authenticity and provenance, as well as amazing product. The Dublin Liberties and The Dubliner Irish whiskey consistently rank among the finest whiskeys in the world due to the care in their distilling and blending as well as the heritage they get from one of Dublin’s most famous – and infamous – areas.”

Scott confirmed that the Dublin Liberties Distillery is scheduled to be completed in the summer of 2018. The distillery will employ up to 15 people when fully operational and up to 40 people are involved in its design and construction.

Stock Spirits’ chief executive Mirek Stachowicz said: “We have already developed strong whiskey category management capabilities courtesy of our distribution agreements with our agency partners, and see these brands as being highly complementary to that platform.

“We see significant potential for the brands globally, including in our core markets of Poland and Czech Republic, and are confident that they will complement our strong market positions in vodka, herbal bitters, brandy and limoncello.  We are hopeful that this will be the start of a long and successful relationship with Quintessential Brands.”

Quintessential Brands also owns a portfolio of Irish creams and liqueurs brands together with a production and bottling facility in Abbeyleix, Co. Laois. Its brands include Feeney’s Irish Cream, O’Mara’s Country Cream, Brogan’s Irish Cream and O’Casey’s Irish Cream which, together with a range of other products, sell a total of 700,000 cases across 50 markets globally. Quintessential employs a total of 51 people in Ireland.

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