COMMENT: Glenmorangie’s success on foreign shores
Despite falling UK sales, Glenmorangie has had a good year, with success in Europe, the US and the Far East. Allying with bigger companies to increase the reach of its marketing, and capitalizing on Asian perceptions of Scotch as a prestigious and valuable drink have all helped to boost sales and profits.
Glenmorangie's performance was boosted by overseas markets this year, leading to an overall rise in sales, despite a 13% fall in the UK. The demand for premium malts was particularly strong in the US, where Glenmorangie outperformed its rivals.
In Europe, the company was aided by its alliance with a larger company - Bacardi Martini - and a smaller one - Drambuie. Working with Bacardi Martini meant that Glenmorangie benefited from its wider marketing platform, especially in Germany, Spain and The Netherlands. Glenmorangie's distribution of Drambuie Sylk, a new cream liqueur, helped it to penetrate the US market.
The success of the company in Spain stands in counterpoint to Diageo's recent troubles regarding its marketing of 'Cardhu pure malt'. Diageo's use there of the Cardhu single malt brand to sell a blended whisky has come in for considerable criticism by other industry players. The company insists, however, that the market for single malt is weakening and that "innovation" is needed to improve sales. However, it seems that Glenmorangie has been able to boost sales without resorting to potentially misleading branding strategies.
In the Far East, the company is achieving a reasonable amount of success. Single malt is a highly prized (and priced) prestige drink in the Far East, where it carries an image of success and appreciation of the finer things in life.
Glenmorangie seems well set to continue this pattern of steady if unremarkable growth. Its three distilleries are running at something approaching full capacity and new management has shown its worth in alliances with other drinks firms.
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