Scotland based whisky producer earmarks South Africa as one of its top growth markets

SOUTH AFRICA – The Glenmorangie Company, a Scotland based premium whisky producer, has unveiled that it is targeting South Africa as one of its top 10 growth markets.

The company’s new president and chief executive, Thomas Moradpour, says that South Africa presents a great opportunity for premium spirits and Scotch malts and should gain proportional share of Glenmorangie sales and develop their brands.

Moradpour, who was appointed to the role in August last year, is currently on a roadshow visiting South Africa and the other targeted markets.

According to a report by IOL Business, Glenmorangie brands in South Africa retail  in the US$28.86 (R400) range for a 10-year-old single malt original up to US$7214 (R100 000).

The products mainly targets the top end of the market of between 7 to 10 LSM (living standards measure).

“In emerging markets, you could see a developing urban and middle class with resources to afford it. South Africa was one of those,” Moradpour said adding the company was also eyeing other countries in Africa.

Moradpour notes that countries like the US and Japan were mature markets that had had an appetite for Scotch for a while.

But according to Moradpour, Scotch malts and single malt was still a relatively new idea for South African consumers and Glenmorangie wants to get into the country early ahead of their Scottish rivals.

“It is early stages for the category. Single malt has been around for a while, but you can see the premiumisation of the brand all around the world and South Africa in particular,” Moradpour explained.

He noted that the two factors that were desired by consumers in South Africa included a desire for prestigious choices as well as an underlying growing desire for intrinsic quality. 

“Glenmorangie was well placed for both,” he said while maintaining that “it is less about the logos to how the product is made.”

To meet its growing sales, the company has recently doubled its production capacity via a multimillion-pound expansion plan by installing more stills at both its Scottish distilleries, Tain in Ross-shire and Ardbeg on the Isle of Islay.

Moradpour said the company was investing in additional sales, casks, warehouses and much more to ensure the firm could grow their distillation capacity.

“We are laying down stock today at a much higher rate than our current sales as we believe in building our brands and making them successful so that our sales reach our levels of our distillation that we are committed to,” he said.

Glenmorangie has a distribution model via its parent firm, LVMH, a luxury firm based in Paris. 

Within that stable, Moët Hennessy has an office for Africa and Middle East based in Cape Town. The Really Great Brand Company distributes the Moët Hennessy brands including Glenmorangie in South Africa.

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