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Allied Blenders in £60m expansion drive

The Indian owner of the world’s second largest whisky brand Officer’s Choice is seeking an investment to help it expand and premiumise its portfolio.

Officer's Choice Allied Blenders & Distillers
Officer’s Choice accounts for around 90% of Allied Blenders & Distillers’ annual volume

Allied Blenders and Distillers (ABD) is seeking private equity funding in the region of Rs500 crore (Rs5bn/ £60m) to help fund the expansion of its in-house distillation and bottling capacity.

Deepak Roy, CEO of ABD told CNBC’s India Business Hour that the funding was needed to both grow the existing business and launch new brands.

“ABD’s biggest weakness over the last three or four years has been that we are pretty much a one and a half brand company,” he said. “The plan is now to premiumise the portfolio and have a representation in almost all the segments.”

Allied, whose sales grew by 14% in the last year, has appointed Ambit Corporate Finance to help raise the funds required.

The move comes just weeks after Allied lost an appeal against John Distilleries’ use of the name Original Choice for one of its whisky brands, which sells around nine million cases a year. The Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB) ruled that the name was distinctive enough from Allied’s similarly-sounding brand Officer’s Choice, which comparatively sells 18 million cases annually.

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