The site produced Guinness Flavour Essence

The site produced Guinness Flavour Essence

Diageo has sold its former Guinness brewery in Waterford to new Irish whiskey venture Renegade Spirits.

The new firm said today the site, which closed last year, will be converted to a distillery and start producing spirit from early 2016. Renegade was founded by former Bruichladdich CEO Mark Reynier, who left the Islay Scotch whisky producer after it was sold to Remy Cointreau in 2012.

Reynier said today: “There has been a proud brewing heritage on this Waterford site since 1792, though it is the recent 2004 brewery that will be converted during 2015 into to the Waterford Distillery. Keeping alive that wonderful history, this will become a significant, state-of-the-art, Irish whiskey distillery.”

Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.

The Waterford site opened in 2004 with a EUR40m investment and produced Guinness Flavour Essence, which is used to ensure Guinness has a consistent flavour profile. Diageo said the site was closed in order to maintain its "global competitiveness".