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Walsh Whiskey unveils €25m distillery plans

Walsh Whiskey Distillery, producers of The Irishman and Writers Tears Irish whiskey brands, has unveiled plans to build a new €25 million distillery.

Walsh Whiskey Distillery
The €25 million expansion of Walsh Whiskey Distillery has been financially-backed by Italian drinks company Illva Saronna

With financial backing from Italian drinks company Illva Saronno, owner of Disaronno, the Walsh Whiskey Distillery will encompass a new visitor centre as well as a new craft distillery, set to be completed by 2016.

The development will allow capacity for 400,000 cases annually, while warehouse capacity will increase to 1.9 million nine-litre cases – allowing to company to stock-build its portfolio of aged whiskeys.

“We are delighted to be expanding our business due to strong demand for our super premium and ultra-premium Irish whiskey brands, which are crafted in the best tradition of 19th century distilling,” said Bernard Walsh, founder of Walsh Whiskey Distillery.

“We are especially pleased to have attracted a partner like Illva Saronno. In addition to its global reach and long-term vision, Illva and Walsh share a similar style and core values that come from being family-run companies.”

The company also believes that its distribution network will increase following the development, from 30 to over 100 countries, including key Asian markets China and India.

Investor Illva Saronno hopes to capitalise on growth in the Irish whiskey sector, which has increased from 4.4 million cases to 6.5 million produced cases since 2008.

Augusto Reina, CEO of Illva Saronno Holding, commented: “With this investment, not only will Illva gain production capacity and expertise in a fast-growing sector such as that of Irish whiskey – which is already showing remarkable growth rates and is expected to grow up to 12 million cases within the next five years – but it will also enable Walsh Whiskey Distillery to lean on Illva as a leading business developer both in Italy and abroad.”

The expansion will create a total of 55 jobs in the Carlow area over the course of five years.

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