Distiller denies sale talk

WHYTE & Mackay looks set to remain under the ownership of Indian businessman Vijay Mallya – despite a 60% dip in profits its last financial year.
A spokesman for the Glasgow-based distiller, whose brands include the Whyte & Mackay blend and single malts The Dalmore and Jura, said Mallya’s UB Group has “no plans to sell the company”.
The billionaire, whose business interests also include Formula 1 and aviation, bought the company in 2007.
The speculation came after pre-tax profits fell 60% to £12.4 million in the year to March 31, 2011, and turnover slid 20% to £169.5m as the company shifted its focus from bulk production to its branded whiskies.
“Whyte & Mackay is conscious of the short-term impact on profits and turnover, but strongly believes the company should be brands-led rather than bulk business,” said finance director Hemanth Menon.