NTMA Talks
NTMA Talks
Dec 1, 2021
ISIF: The Irish Whiskey Growth Fund – Funding the Irish Whiskey Revival
Play • 41 min

In this episode, Joanne Butler, ISIF,  and Fearghal Ó Ríordáin, Founder and Managing Partner of Ilen River Partners, discuss how The Irish Whiskey Growth Fund is supporting Irish whiskey through a unique financing structure allowing business owners to focus their efforts on producing quality whiskey and achieving scale.

The Irish Whiskey Growth Fund was established in 2018 by Ilen River Partners and is supported by ISIF. It is the first fund established exclusively to lend to independent whiskey distilleries and other businesses operating in the whiskey sector across Ireland. The Fund has been formed specifically to fit the business model of whiskey businesses at each stage of their development, from the earliest stages of production to commercial maturity.

Through both direct and indirect investment, the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF) provides capital to some of the most innovative and forward-thinking projects in Ireland.

During its heyday in the early 19th century, Ireland was viewed as the ‘whiskey capital’ of the world.  However, the introduction of new taxes and the advancement of cheaper whiskey alternatives eventually forced the industry into decline and almost disappearance. A major distilling revival has gathered pace over the last decade and shows little sign of abating. Given the long-term nature of the whiskey production cycle, the industry now faces a unique challenge requiring financing solutions suited to a long-time horizon to achieve scale. With the right support and investment could Ireland once again become the ‘whiskey capital’ of the world?

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