Home » Head of Distillation (Alexandria)
- October 23, 2023
The Loch Lomond Group is an independent distiller and blender of some of the finest and rarest Scotch whiskies in the world, with heritage amongst the oldest in the industry.
With history dating back to 1772, it is one of only 7 “full services” producers or Scotch Whisky (including both malt and grain distilling, cooperage, blending and maturation) and is one of the largest independently owned firms in the sector.
Privately owned until 2014, LLG was acquired in a Management Buy-In transaction by the current management team led by Colin Matthews. Since then the business has undergone significant transformation as the management have executed a value creation strategy to repackage and reposition the brands, expand both Loch Lomond and Glen Scotia Distilleries, establish a maturation site in Hurlford and fully develop the bottling facilities in East Ayrshire. These steps have allowed the business to launch into new international markets as it continues its ambitious growth strategy.
It has won a number of prestigious industry awards in recent years including “Best Whisky in the World” for its Glen Scotia 25-year-old single malt and “Distillery of the Year” by the SFWSA. It has also established strong commercial relationships including with “The Open” Major Golf Championship hosted in the UK.
As part of the organisations ongoing growth of its leadership teams and to support the future development of distillery operations, the business is seeking to appoint a new Head of Distillation. The role will initially be to run the Distillery, cooperage, blending, filling and warehousing at Alexandria, plus maturation at Hurlford. After a period of 12-18 months, it is expected that this individual will be in the position to take on broader responsibility within the Group which will include the Glen Scotia Distillery in Campbeltown as well as the commercial activities that surround bulk liquid sales.
This is a fantastic role for an experienced Distillery leader to operate in a prestigious and growing business, which could be done from a Central Scotland home base, a rare opportunity in the sector, and will report directly to the Supply & Operations Director.
Alexandria is a large distilling operation which houses an 18mlaa Grain Distillery and a very flexible 5mlaa Malt Distillery.
With significant expansion planned for the distillery in Q1 2024 including the integration of additional pot stills and capacity, it is a fantastic time to join, with the delivery of expansion for planned growth and the development of the distilling process being core parts of the new Head of Distillations remit.
Managing a large distillation team (25) and spirit handling (30), the individual will provide overall leadership to the site and drive forward key projects with regards to;
- CAPEX programme delivery including site expansion activity and equipment and process improvement
- Strategic procurement activity for raw materials (including cereals and wood) to improve product quality
- Overall distillery improvement activity i.e. yield improvements, energy reduction [with potential Anaerobic Reactor/Digestor projects] and resource efficiencies
- The ongoing strategic evaluation of new distilleries
- Driving innovation in the distillation process including the utilisation of different cereals currently being distilled
This is a critical role for the business at a time of growth and the individual will also play a key part in representing Loch Lomond externally with industry stakeholders, setting up reciprocal commercial whisky trading deals internationally and supporting broader supply chain and operational improvements.
We are seeking to appoint an experienced Distillery leader who has the right balance of technical knowhow with regards to distilling processes and strategic awareness to operate as part of a senior management team in a growing international business.
Please note it is essential that the successful candidate has some experience within a distilling, brewing or chemical engineering industry of relevant comparison.
They will bring a degree of humility and proactivity to positively contribute to the fantastic culture and working environment that has been built up over the last 9 years as part of the new ownership.
We are keen to speak with candidates who possess most of the following;
- Preferably degree in Engineering/Brewing and Distilling
- Experience of leadership of a large, complex distillation site – Continuous stills and Pot stills preferably
- The ability to lead from the front and evidence of creating strong cultures
- Strong stakeholder management experience and knowledge of Scotch Whisky industry through professional connections and SWA committees for example
- A strong commercial understanding of costs associated with COM of distilleries including raw materials/cereals, energy consumption and ongoing costs
- An understanding of wood/cask management and warehousing
- Evidence of completed engineering projects to expand/improve distilling efficiencies and warehouse sites
- Whilst not essential, it would be advantageous if candidates had exposure to bulk spirit supply/sales for international customers or have engaged as part of that sales process
To arrange a confidential discussion regarding this opportunity or request a copy of the candidate brochure, please contact;
Jamie Brown, Director, FWB Park Brown