Entrepreneur Sandy Bulloch has finally sold his Loch Lomond Distillery Company, after more than a year of negotiations, to Exponent Private Equity (“Exponent”), a private equity firm specialising in UK business investments. The company has bought the assets of the company which includes Loch Lomond Distillery at Alexandria, West Dunbartonshire; the Glen Catrine packaging plant at Mauchline in Ayrshire; and the Glen Scotia malt distillery in Campbeltown, Argyll and Bute. The company’s brands currently include the “Loch Lomond” and “Glen Scotia” single malt Scotch whiskies, the “High Commissioner” blended Scotch whisky and “Glen’s Vodka”.
Under the terms of the acquisition, The Loch Lomond Distillery Company’s assets have been acquired by the newly formed Loch Lomond Group, in which Exponent owns a majority stake, with the management team also investing in the venture. The management team includes Colin Matthews as CEO. He is originally from Glasgow and was previously responsible for leading Imperial Tobacco’s businesses in Africa, the Middle East, Asia and the Indian sub-continent and the new business will be chaired by Nick Rose, former Diageo Chief Financial Officer.
Loch Lomond Distillers in their last auditied accounts showed a rise in turnover from £31.2m to £35.6m, and pre-tax earnings of £469,003 for the year ended March 31, 2013. Although Exponent have not declared what they paid for the company but eighteen months ago Remy Cointreau paid in the region of £50m for Bruichladdich.
Sandy Bulloch bought the Loch Lomond distillery in 1985 and he also owns wholesaler Inverarity-Morton, and the Portavadie Marina near Loch Fyne. Plans for Portavadie Distillery and Visitor Centre appear to be on hold.