Diageo intros TR Johnnie Walker blended maltBy Kristiane Sherry
Diageo Global Travel is seeking to “transform” the travel retail Scotch category with the release of the first blended malt travel retail exclusive Johnnie Walker expression, Johnnie Walker Island Green.
Described as a “rare blend of rich malt whiskies”, Johnnie Walker Island Green is said to offer a “greater influence of smoky, maritime malt whisky” compared to the recently re-introduced Johnnie Walker Green Label.
The release includes liquid from Islay distillery Caol Ila, which is given “added prominence”, Highland-based Clynelish, Lowland Glenkinchie and Speyside Cardhu.
“The launch of Johnnie Walker Island Green is a true game-changer for the Scotch whisky category in travel retail,” said Doug Bagley, Diageo Global Travel Middle East (GTME) managing director.
“For the first time ever, we are able to offer our customers an exclusive blended malt whisky from the biggest spirits brand in the channel, strongly supported with the backing of Johnnie Walker investment and marketing activation.
“Malts is the fastest growing category in travel retail, growing at twice the rate of the overall Scotch category [IWSR], but the scale of variants, ages and flavours can be overwhelming to shoppers. Research shows that 7 out of 10 malt shoppers drank blended Scotch before entering into malts [Diageo Shopper Research 2015], so we believe the launch of Johnnie Walker Island Green will act as an incredible signpost for those shoppers who want to explore the category.
“Thanks to the immense skill of the whisky makers at Johnnie Walker, and our unrivalled access to over 40% of the industry’s inventory of Malts, we believe we have an incredible special blended malt that will be immensely popular with consumers either as a treat for themselves or as a special gift.”
Johnnie Walker Island Green will be available globally in travel retail outlets from July 2016, retailing at US$60 for a one litre bottle.
Earlier this month Diageo GTME announced a series of Gentleman’s Wager II-themed activations resulted in a 25% depletions uplift in travel retail.