Whisky Advocate

Breaking news: Beam Global loses The Dalmore

December 21st, 2007

Beam Global just announced that they sold the U.S. distribution rights to The Dalmore to the Distillery’s relatively new owner, the UB Group, for $58 Million. Here’s what Beam Global’s President Tom Flocco has to say about it in the press release I just received:

“This is a win-win transaction for Beam Global and for UB Group,” said Tom Flocco, president and chief executive officer of Beam Global.  “The U.S. distribution rights for The Dalmore offered limited upside for us due to supply agreements that would have constrained our long-term supply.  At the same time, UB Group was eager to consolidate worldwide distribution of The Dalmore, having purchased the brand earlier this year. 

“In the past two years, we have significantly strengthened our global position in the most attractive segments of the Scotch whisky category with the acquisition of Laphroaig and launch of Ardmore in the fast-growing single-malt segment, and the addition of Teacher’s, which is demonstrating strong growth in the premium blended segment.  With our interest in maximizing focus on global growth of these tremendous Scotch brands, the U.S. rights to The Dalmore became more valuable to UB Group than to us,” Flocco added.  

The deal includes Beam’s current inventory of the brand in the U.S. as well as a transitional agreement.

I suspected something was up back in August when Beam Global surprisingly pulled The Dalmore out of participating in all three WhiskyFests for 2008, which came as a shock to us, given they always participated and hosted seminars at each event.

UB’s other brands, Old Fettercairn and Jura, are being imported by an arm of Sazerac, Gemini Spirits and Wines. I was wondering if Gemini might be picking them up. But as soon as I heard the news, I reached out to Mark Brown, President of Buffalo Trace (another arm of Sazerac). He is in the loop on all this stuff. His response:

Nope, it does not mean Dalmore is coming to us, although, obviously, we would be delighted to have the brand and modestly believe we could do great things with it.

I’ll ask around and see what I can find out. When I do, I’ll post it right up.

6 Responses to “Breaking news: Beam Global loses The Dalmore”

  1. John Hansell says:

    I reached out to my contact at Beam Global and here’s what she had to say:

    “For now, Future Brands (part of Beam Global) will import it directly from UB for 2008. Not sure what UB will do after 2008…”

    So, it looks like things will stay status quo for 2008. I also expect the brand to be pretty static regarding any new releases. Companies don’t like to introduce new expressions right before or during a distribution transition.

  2. lawschooldrunk says:

    Quote: “I also expect the brand to be pretty static regarding any new releases. Companies don’t like to introduce new expressions right before or during a distribution transition.”

    ummm, then why does http://www.thedalmore.com hint to new things coming. I here on the grapevine, that besides a new look for the dalmore, they will be releasing new ages statements. care to explain? :)

  3. John Hansell says:

    Yes, I am aware of the website’s hinting about upcoming changes, and I’m only speaking based on past experiences. But, history would suggest that the changes would occur first in the UK and rest of Europe and then not take place in the U.S. until after the importer change (i.e., sometime during 2009). I’ll reach out to my contacts at Whyte & Mackay after the holidays and see if I can get more details.

  4. B.J. Reed says:

    This won’t be the last shift in distilleries I suspect. Dalmore has the best (along with Speyburn) price structure for its 12 YO and Cigar Malt in the U.S. – When our Omaha group visited the distillery in March they couldn’t believe what we were paying for the 12 YO in the U.S. – Jura has introduced several new products in the last few years but Fettercairn is very limited in its release of single malts – Wonder if that will change?

    B.J.

  5. John Hansell says:

    Absolutely. Fettercairn is about to change in 2008. Gemini Spirits & Wines (a division of Sazerac) who has been importing Jura for the past year or two now also has the rights to import Fettercairn to the U.S. I was shown the inventory of stocks at Fettercairn and it is amazing. They have vintages going back to the early 1960s, with a large amount of casks from 1964. Expect to see some of these in the New Year.

  6. B.J. Reed says:

    John

    Should have read your earlier post about Sazerac and Fettercairn :0) but this is exciting news – There are several other distilleries that have produced very limited bottlings (Singleton/Auchroisk for example) and it would be great to have some of these distilleries produce a larger range of single malt from their stocks.

    B.J.

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