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Korean Scotch Whisky Brand set for Global expansion


Diageo Korea, the Korean arm of the world’s largest alcoholic drinks maker, is preparing for the debut of a new version of its local best-selling whisky brand, Windsor, on the global market next month with the launching of its latest edition.

“The renewed Windsor is the outcome of our efforts for years to make it a global brand,” Diageo Korea CEO Kim Jong-woo said in a statement, disclosing his plan for the company to launch the premium-class product in duty-free shops in several Asian countries.

Earlier this month, the company said it will focus on several new non-whisky products, including beers and ready-mixed low-alcohol drinks, in an announcement that included a plan to release Windsor’s high-end edition.

“By adding fresh new advantages to the old ones that have upheld Windsor so far, we will do our utmost to keep the brand competitive among customers abroad,” Kim said.

The signature whisky, which has been in the top spot in sales since 2006, will undergo a major upgrade.

The biggest change is that the new Windsor will now have Douglas Murray as a master blender for its 12-year- and 17-year-old products. Using malts distilled at the Royal Lochnagar Distillery in Scotland, Murray will blend the signature elegant and smooth flavor of the whisky, Diageo Korea said.

The new edition will also boast a new bottle created by British designer Gordon Smith, adding a modern and cubic twist to its traditional design.

Unlike former editions, the latest Windsor will not be labeled by the year. Though its price has not been fixed, the product is likely to sell for a higher price than the 21-year-old Windsor, which is the current high-end product.

With its recent moves, Diageo Korea said it is looking to consolidate its pole position in the Korean market.

“Even in the slowdown that’s prevailed in the Korean whisky market over the previous year, Diageo Korea has maintained its edge over rivals,” Kim said in the statement. “Now we’re aiming to raise our market share to 50 percent within this year, if not earlier.”

Currently, the company takes up nearly 40 percent of the Korean whiskey market.

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Thursday, January 18, 5:34 pm

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