GlenWyvis Distillery Limited has been established as a Community Benefit Society for the specific purpose of owning and operating a community-owned whisky distillery and associated visitor centre to benefit the community of Dingwall.
The distillery will produce high quality, craft Scottish whisky and craft gin, and together with a proposed visitor centre, will aim to benefit the local community by developing Dingwall into the leading Craft Distillery Town of Scotland, and a quality destination on the North Coast 500 tourist route.
In 2016, the first share offer in GlenWyvis Distillery Limited raised a total of £2.6 million from some 2,200 investors towards anticipated costs of £3.8 million. With construction of the distillery now well underway – see our live updates – and the detailed costs more clearly established, the second Open Share Offer has been brought forward to open the door to a new audience.
This Open Share Offer is your opportunity to support the continued development of GlenWyvis Distillery and the local community of Dingwall. The primary reasons for bringing this planned share offer forward from 2019 are as follows:
To meet the continuing demand for investment opportunities
Since July 2016, we have received regular investment requests from the local area and beyond – both from people want to invest for themselves and from others wanting to gift investment. We also anticipate increasing interest from visitors to Dingwall, and this open share issue is designed to address this demand with a tailored offer that will further increase membership of the Society
To accelerate our brand development plans
In addition, funds raised from the open share issue will also help to accelerate the GlenWyvis brand development plans in line with feedback from our members in a recent survey. Over 50% of our members completed the survey and we are keen to act on their views. This will include making improvements to the brand and product sales and marketing strategy, bringing gin distilling into the Dingwall operation, and further development of the GlenWyvis visitor experience in and around Dingwall
To reduce commercial borrowing
Following the success of the original share offer, the scale of the project increased. Commercial finance has been secured to ensure the project is delivered, but the funds raised through this share offer will help to reduce commercial lending – so that we pay the banks less interest and deliver on our community benefit remit sooner
A detailed summary of the project to date – and the current project financing – can be read in the Open Share Offer Prospectus.
Some more background
The GlenWyvis Distillery project was initiated by John McKenzie in 2015 with the support of other key people in the wider community who gained funding for feasibility studies to find the most suitable site for a community-owned distillery in the Dingwall area. These studies resulted in a site being secured on a 175 year lease, with planning permission given for a craft distillery – and all environmental and distilling licenses in place.
In April 2016, the GlenWyvis founders launched the biggest-ever community crowd-funding campaign in UK history. Like-minded people from Dingwall and beyond came together to invest in the project – all keen to be part of something truly historic. A total of £2.6 million was raised in just 77 days from more than 2,200 members, with over 60% of them from the local IV postcode area – and the remainder coming from a total of 31 countries worldwide.
Following the detailed planning, design and costing phase, the construction of the new distillery commenced in January 2017. The stills and distilling equipment arrived in July and completion of the build phase is now scheduled for November 2017, with the first run of new make spirit following shortly after.
Situated high on a hill above Dingwall, GlenWyvis Distillery will be entirely powered by renewable energy, and as a Community Benefit Society, the aim is to take a lead role in the rejuvenation of Dingwall and the wider Highland community.