Whisky Focus - William Grant & Sons Reports Record Year In Travel Retail

William Grant & Sons Reports Record Year In Travel Retail

7th March 2013
William Grant & Sons reports record year in travel retail and focuses on exclusive lines for 2013.

William Grant & Sons will attend the Duty Free Show of the Americas this year with yet another record year in travel retail reported for 2012. All of the company's core brands including Glenfiddich, The Balvenie, Grant’s, Tullamore Dew and Hendrick’s Gin have grown by value over the past year, with volume sales significantly above expectations.

The travel retail result reflected global success for the company with highlights including:

  • Glenfiddich becoming the first ever single malt Scotch Whisky to sell more than 1 million cases in a single year.
  • Grant’s Blended Scotch moving ahead of J&B to become the world’s 3rd largest blended Scotch by both value and volume.
  • William Grant & Sons named IWSC Distiller of the Year for a record breaking fifth successive year.
  • Hendrick’s Gin cementing its position as the world’s leading super premium gin.
  • Opening of the new Tullamore DEW Visitor Centre –with large investment planned for new distillery.

Duty Free Show of the Americas Show Preview

At this year’s Orlando show, William Grant & Sons will be focussing on exclusive editions for travel retail in the coming year, seen as essential in customer engagement within the airport environment.

The Balvenie

As I reported here in November, the focus for The Balvenie this coming year is the launch of the Travel Retail exclusive The Balvenie Triple Cask range, comprising of 12 year old, 16 year old and 25 year old variants.

Created exclusively for Travel Retail, the Triple Cask range offers expressions of The Balvenie that has matured in the three most traditional types of cask – first-fill bourbon, refill bourbon and sherry; all in a large wooden vessel known as a marrying tun. These new marriages of The Balvenie are made to precise recipes refined over time by David Stewart to ensure each captures the distillery’s distinctive rich, smooth and honeyed style.

Also as I have mentioned here only last month The Balvenie Tun 1401 Batch 7 will be available during the first quarter of 2013, exclusively to travel retail, The Balvenie Tun 1401 is another unique creation from Malt Master David Stewart. After transferring specially selected casks from across the ages, including some of the distillery’s rarest treasures to a small marrying tun, the liquid is left to rest for several months prior to bottling to produce a single malt that enhances its already precious parts. The Balvenie Tun 1401 takes its name from the traditional oak marrying tun in which the aged whisky is married.


One of the big success stories for 2011 and 2012 has been the launch of the travel retail exclusive Glenfiddich 19 Year Old Glenfiddich Age of Discovery Madeira Cask Finish. Such has been the reception that, following the introduction of a second version, William Grant & Sons have added a third version in 2013. Again exclusive to the channel, and designed to become a gifting range, Glenfiddich Age of Discovery Red Wine Cask Finish which is also 19 years old. This third addition to the popular series celebrates Darwin’s voyage of discovery on board The HMS Beagle in 1831 that sailed from Plymouth in England. Charles Darwin, a young gentleman naturalist on board the ship – was recruited by Robert Fitzroy, ship’s Captain, to record the natural history and geology that they were to encounter in their travels.

Age of Discovery Red Wine Cask Finish is an extraordinarily rich Glenfiddich Single Malt Scotch Whisky, finished in oak casks previously used to produce the smooth, complex wines of South America. Malbec, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes combine with the oak to deliver exceptional smoothness complimented by warm spicy notes - sweet berry flavours lend a velvety sweetness.

As we told you back in December, to mark 125 years of pioneering spirit at the Glenfiddich Distillery, William Grant and Sons has launched the new Glenfiddich 125th Anniversary Edition gift pack. Launched exclusively for travel retail, it is a vatting of peated and unpeated Glenfiddich and a taste of how Glenfiddich would have tasted like in the past the Glenfiddich 125th Anniversary Edition is a limited edition single malt Scotch whisky created by William Grant’s Malt Master, Brian Kinsman. It is available in a very attractive gift tin, presented with a beautiful copper stopper, a certificate of authenticity & leaflet on the product and should appeal to both the whisky collector and connoisseur.

Tullamore DEW

In an increasingly competitive Irish whiskey market, Tullamore DEW has maintained its momentum. Significant progress has been made on key strategic brand initiatives: the development and launch globally of the new brand positioning, development and initial roll out of the global communication platform ‘Irish True’, the upgrade of the Tullamore DEW Original packaging design, and the ongoing development of a new brand home with the takeover of the Tullamore DEW Visitor Centre.


For Grant’s Blended Scotch Whisky – now the world’s number three brand in retail value - the focus continues to be premiumisation of the brand with the continued roll out of the global travel retail exclusive 25 Year Old, the premium 12 Year Old, and various cask finishes which highlight the depth and quality of the brand.

Hendrick's Gin

Outstanding growth for the world’s leading super premium gin continues in travel retail thanks to a program of high profile theatrical promotions and activities that highlight the unique manufacturing process and taste of Hendrick’s. The Barber Chair concept (launched at last year’s Duty Free Show of the Americas), was introduced into other key markets in Global Travel Retail and has caused a stir wherever it has run.

Following the success of the travel retail exclusive Tea Time Martini gift pack, William Grant & Sons is launching a new ‘Teatime Pack’ for 2013 in Orlando.

This delightfully peculiar cucumber and rose petal infused gin has staked its claim as one of the industry’s most premium quality gin libations by taking silver at the world’s leading spirits competition, the 2012International Spirits Challenge (ISC).

Sailor Jerry

Sailor Jerry continues to enjoy growth with distribution limited to locations where listings are supported by strong domestic on- and off-trade presence. Both are supported by impactful and entertaining promotions and sampling activity. Las year’s Flash art tattoo concept activation that went live in March in JFK is currently being launched throughout GTR in 2013.

Innovation brands such as Milagro, Reyka, Hudson and Monkey Shoulder. William Grant & Sons is steadily increasing the number of brands offered apart from whisk(e)y . The launch and roll out of these brands is controlled starting in 2013.

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