BenRiach Distillery Co is to invest GBP7m (US$11.7m) in its GlenDronach Scotch whisky brand and distillery over the next four years.

BenRiach will spend GBP5m on sherry casks for maturing the whisky and a further GBP2m on brand promotion and new staff, the group announced today (11 September).

"In recent years, GlenDronach has fallen out of view but it has maintained a kind of cult status," said BenRiach MD Billy Walker. "This new investment returns it to centre-stage."

BenRiach bought GlenDronach, which had been mothballed between 1996 and 2002, from Pernod Ricard last year. A fee was not disclosed, but sources close to the deal told just-drinks that the fee was a little above GBP15m.

At the time of the BenRiach acquisition, GlenDronach sold less than 20,000 bottles annually worldwide. This year, having added a number of new expressions like the 15 and 18 Year Old, GlenDronach will sell around 150,000 bottles, BenRiach said.

It aims to 250,000 bottles annually by 2014.

The group plans to recruit a further five staff, taking its total workers to 35.