Isle of Arran Distillers has reported record results with the publication of their latest annual accounts.
The figures to the end of 2014 reveal that turnover rose by 21 per cent and net profit increased by 51 per cent – the best performance posted since the business started in 1995.
Success is being driven by brand sales that are ahead by 25 per cent – in marked contrast to a 7 per cent decline for the Scotch whisky industry as a whole.
The results reflect the underlying strength of the business. After a succession of healthy profits reported over the last five years, turnover for the independent distiller has more than doubled since 2010.
While 2014 saw total Scotch whisky exports fall at their fastest rate for 16 years, export sales for Isle of Arran Distillers climbed, with key markets for growth including Germany, Taiwan and Canada.
The award-winning Arran Single Malts are now available in 45 countries and further markets are being explored.
Managing director, Euan Mitchell, is delighted with the year-end results, saying: “In a challenging period for Scotch whisky our continued growth is testament to a focus on quality and a clear strategy well executed.
“Some people believe when the big companies in the industry sneeze we all catch a cold but this is not our experience. Interest in smaller, independent brands such as ours is surging and we are not even scratching the surface in global terms.”
As well as driving export sales, the Arran Malt is set for increased distribution in the UK with M&S, where two products will be available in stores later in 2015.
A key factor in the recent success of the business has been the repackaging of The Arran Malt core range, which launched in the second half of 2014. Combined with a schedule of limited edition releases, especially the final release of the acclaimed Devil’s Punch Bowl series, helped to grow sales of Arran single malts by 23 per cent over the previous year.
Euan Mitchell added: “We have invested to support the progress we expect to make.
“Two new pot stills are on order and will be installed in late 2016. This will allow production to double beyond one million litres of pure alcohol once fully commissioned.
“We have never been the kind of distillery to produce more than we expect to sell, so this boost in capacity and capability is purely a reflection of the anticipated demand for Arran malts.
“Though never complacent, we look forward with great confidence to celebrating our 21st anniversary in 2016.”
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