BI and Michael Spencer have together acquired a 25% stake in Westmorland Spirits, the owner of the award-winning premium gin brand, Gilpin’s, which is made in London. Michael Spencer, who is Group CEO of NEX Group and also Chairman of BI, acquired his stake through IPGL, his private investment group.
The investment by Michael Spencer and BI will provide Westmorland Spirits with further funds for its sales and marketing activity and the development of new products for the premium spirits market. Westmorland will also utilise BI’s global distribution centre in London to accelerate Gilpin’s sales and exports as well gaining contacts with potential distributors in other geographic markets.
Established in 2010, Westmorland Spirits created its own brand, Gilpin’s Westmorland Extra Dry Gin, with the intention of bringing a sophisticated, unique and extra dry tasting gin to the market. Having won a Gold Medal in the prestigious International Wine & Spirit Competition in 2012, Gilpin’s gin is recognised as a modern classic and is stocked in a variety of high-end bars and restaurants, such as the chain of Ivy Restaurants, Hix Soho, Sexy Fish and Duke’s Hotel Bar.
Matthew Gilpin, Director of Westmorland Spirits Ltd and the creator of Gilpin’s Gin said: "This partnership opens up several doors for us in the UK, marketing to wine and spirits connoisseurs as well as the high-end on trade. BI Wines & Spirits already sell the finest wines to the best hotels and bars and we are delighted to join that stable. Furthermore, BI’s significant Asia presence will bring our products to a market brimming with interest and potential.
“This transaction and investment by BI and Michael Spencer also opens up the door to expansion of our product range and international marketing efforts as we seek to make Gilpin's even more of an export success story."
Michael Spencer, Chairman of BI, commented: "I am really impressed by the business Matthew has built, the quality of the product and his entrepreneurial approach. I was therefore delighted to be able to invest alongside BI, to give the business the financial backing it needs to continue growing and further expand its level of exports. I am convinced Gilpin's will keep going from strength to strength."
BI’s Managing Director, Gary Boom, says: “I have known Matthew Gilpin for many years and Gilpin’s is my house gin. It makes the perfect G&T and Martini – every home and bar should have a bottle. Matthew has developed a seriously smart brand and I look forward to working with him to help grow and develop his brand.”