Scotland business

Inver House Distillers posts sharp fall in profits

Speyburn Distillery Image copyright Anne Burgess
Image caption Inver House owns the Speyburn distillery in Rothes

Thai-owned Scotch whisky producer Inver House Distillers has reported a sharp fall in revenue and profits.

The Airdrie-based company, whose single malts include Old Pulteney, Speyburn, anCnoc and Balblair, said pre-tax profits fell 19.5% last year to £9.5m.

Turnover was also down by 15.2% to £67.2m.

Inver House, which is owned by ThaiBev, said the drop was largely due to a reduction in sales of bulk whiskies and other "value-for-money" products.

It also cited a major reorganisation of distribution arrangements in its key US market.

Inver House said it remained focused on the long-term global success of its brands, having completed a £10m investment programme which included boosting production capacity at its Speyburn distillery in Moray.

In its results statement, the distiller said its core brands had continued to perform strongly in most of its markets.

Its "super-premium" small batch gin Caorunn, which is made at Balmenach Distillery in the Spey valley, also performed strongly, with sales up in value by 65% on last year.

'Period of transition'

Inver House managing director Graham Stevenson said: "Although our reported profits have fallen, our actual results are slightly ahead of expectations.

"2015 was the start of a period of transition as we began to reduce our reliance on bulk and lower value products, and we took the opportunity to make significant changes to our distribution arrangements in the very important US market.

'We have strong brands which continue to grow despite difficult trading conditions in numerous markets."

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