Fife whisky bond gets Scottish Enterprise support

Plans by Dutch-owned Scotch Whisky Investments (SWI) to develop a major bonded whisky storage facility in Glenrothes in Fife have taken a major step forward after the project received support from Scottish Enterprise.

Scotland’s national economic development agency will provide SWI with a £850,000 grant for its plans in the Fife town, which will provide premium cask storage facilities along with bottling and additional cask services.

Since 2015, Scotch Whisky Investments has been operating under a license from the Netherlands Authority for the Financial Markets (AFM).

Scottish Enterprise’s support, which compliments the company’s multi-million pound investment in the project, will deliver up to 38 full-time jobs, all of which will be above the real living wage.

Exports of Scotch Whisky grew to more than £6 billion for the first time in 2022, according to figures released by the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA).

Scottish Government Cabinet Secretary for Wellbeing Economy, Fair Work and Energy, Neil Gray, said: “Attracting businesses to invest in Scotland is key to our goal of creating a fair, green and growing economy.

“This investment from SWI is another success for our strategic Team Scotland approach, bringing together the Scottish Government, economic agencies and our international network to promote this country as an inward investment destination.

“The Scotch whisky industry is of tremendous importance to Scotland’s economy, employing in excess of 11,000 people – more than 7,000 in rural areas – and boosting exports by £6.2 billion in 2022.”

Mark Hallan, Director of Global Investment at Scottish Enterprise, said: “SWI has ambitious plans to provide a comprehensive offering to its clients in Glenrothes, including full cask management services, which will be attractive to consumers and targets a gap in the market for suitable Scotch shortage.

“Our globally based Scottish Development International (SDI) teams have worked closely with SWI on their plans for Fife.  This is a project we’ve been pleased to support, which will not only provide a jobs boost for the local workforce but will also put down roots for SWI in Scotland.

“Scotland is globally renowned for many reasons, one of which is our national drink, Scotch.  Working alongside our ‘Team Scotland’ partners including InvestFife, SDI will continue to promote the very best our country has to offer to international investors, delivering economic opportunities in the process.”

Formed in 2007, SWI offers asset management solutions around rare Scotch single malt whisky. With €270 million in assets under management on behalf of clients, it’s one of the largest investment management companies in Scotch whisky worldwide.

Headquartered in Sassenheim, The Netherlands, SWI aims to deliver a centre of excellence for the support of the cask investment and storage market in Glenrothes that allows Scotch to age on site, creating high quality matured Scotch whisky.

Alongside its plans for Glenrothes, SWI is aiming to deliver a new mixed-used development in Falkland, which will include a visitor centre that will showcase and educate people about single malt Scotch whisky.

SWI director Keith Rennie said: “As part of our growth and expansion globally, the site in Glenrothes is the first step in the development of our operations into Scotland, and will become the base for our business for many years to come.

“The support of SDI and Fife Council’s Economic Development team has been invaluable in allowing us to transition to Fife, and build out our operation and prepare for the future.”

The grant support from Scottish Enterprise is the latest milestone reached by SWI for its Glenrothes project.

Working jointly with Scottish Enterprise and its globally based SDI teams, InvestFife, the collective brand for Fife Council’s Economic Development, supported SWI in identifying the perfect site to enable the business to establish its base in Fife.

The sale of 7.7 hectares at Crompton Road East, Glenrothes, concluded in April following planning approval for the development and marked one of the area’s most significant industrial land sales in recent years.

Pamela Stevenson, Service Manager, Economic Development at Fife Council, said: “We are delighted to conclude the sale of Crompton Road East in Glenrothes and welcome the news that Scottish Enterprise has awarded a grant to support the ambitious, innovative plans of Scotch Whisky Investments, which will contribute significantly to the local economy and create sustainable employment in the area.

“We are continuing to work with the company to ensure that all planning and statutory consents are delivered on time to ensure a smooth transition into Fife and showcasing Fife as the best place to do business.”