Diageo ups focus on China with Mortlach roll-out
The Rare Old expression of Diageo's Mortlach single malt whisky
Diageo has revealed more plans for the global roll-out and promotion of its updated range of Mortlach single malt whiskies, including a major focus on China.
The four-strong “luxury” range, launched earlier this year, will be released througout the global Travel Retail channel between February and April next year, a spokesperson confirmed to just-drinks. In addition, on-trade activity and work with “key influencers” is planned for five “key” cities in China. These are: Beijing, Shanghai, Xiamen, Shenzhen and Guangzhou.
Georgie Bell, Mortlach's brand ambassador, will tour Asia early next year after a visit to Canada next month to speak at the Victoria Whisky Festival.
Speaking to journalists at a dinner in London last week, Richard Walker, Diageo's global head of malt whisky marketing, said the luxury whisky market was "growing rapidly" and offered a “huge opportunity” for the company. He described Mortlach as one of its “hidden gems” that had previously been used in some of the “most famous blends”.
Walker added that because of the limited nature of supplies and the positioning of the brand, "you won't see it advertised on TV, or billboards”.
Mortlach is also due to be listed in around 1,300 high-end cocktail and speciality whisk(e)y stores globally, the spokesperson added.
The most expensive expression of Mortlach, the 25 year-old, is retailing at GBP600, or $1,000 in the US.
The key markets for the brand are Greater China, the UK, Germany, the US and global Travel Retail.
The new expressions of Mortlach are being sold in 50cl bottles because of the limited supplies, according to Diageo, except in the US where it must be sold in 75cl bottles for legal reasons.
Diageo is also upping the availability of its David Beckham-backed single grain Scotch whisky, Haig Club, with a launch into the US this month.
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