Glencairn Crystal emphasise Scots roots amid global expansion

February 25, 2019

PREMIUM crystal glassware expert Glencairn Crystal was set up more than 40 years ago by Scott Davidson’s father. Davidson has now taken over the business, which he started working in aged just 10. The company has a huge stake of the international market as it is available in more than 70 countries and has plans for further expansion in Asia and the US.

Name: Scott Davidson

Age: 47

Position: Product development director


Glencairn Crystal


East Kilbride


MY father set it up almost 40 years ago. He started at Edinburgh Crystal putting company logos on decanters. Edinburgh Crystal couldn’t service customers well so we bought it over and that’s what we’ve been doing ever since. I grew up in the business.

My education is in computer science and electronics – not in anything artistic – but I have worked there since I was 10 and have been engraving crystals since age 14. Me and my brother have been in it from a very young age – officially almost 30 years, unofficially nearly 35.

I am originally from Airdrie and there are two distillers based there – Inner House Distillers and Burn Stewart distillers. My dad started there and the business just expanded.

When we started to expand we thought national would be good but it was actually easier to go international and go around the world – we are in hundreds of distillers in the US. Engaging with consumers around the world is easier than doing it here. We grew our market in the UK afterwards.

There are values in being a Scottish company. There is a quality aspect to the product which makes doing business easy and quite personable as well. We try to operate the business on family values – we are not some corporate entity that overrides the quality of the business. This kind of business works better abroad than people appreciate.


IT is hard to say. There are lots of different aspects to the business. We’ve got the glasses, bottles and decanters market. Interestingly we don’t really have competition in the UK. We have some in France from the old established crystal market and glassware market around the world. The skill is we developed the product for the global markets and we do a lot of the brand work here in our little factory. We are investing in hand-crafting in Scotland and are interested in the growing craftsmanship in Scotland. Scotland is core to who we are.


BESIDES the gift-giving market, working in the drinks industry is a large part of the business (more than 80%). The target market is consumers that appreciate whisky and spirits around the world. That market changes constantly – with [the popularity of] gin there is a bigger female market than ever. We are in more than 70 countries including Antarctica and we also supply a small whisky distillery in Patagonia. We are also in Taiwan, Japan, India and Scandinavia.

Original Article:

The week in pictures

February 1, 2019

This week, family-owned crystal company Glencairn joined Elite, the London Stock Exchange Group’s programme for fast-growing companies.

The whisky glass producer is one of seven Scottish companies to have joined Elite, and each was welcomed into the programme at a launch event hosted by the CEO of Elite and first minister Nicola Sturgeon (pictured).

Elite Scotland will feature tailored events, training and a mentorship network in Scotland.

Original Source:

Seven Scots companies join London Stock Exchange Group ELITE programme

January 30, 2019

The initiative for fast-growing companies is the first of its kind for newly-formed ELITE Scotland

Seven Scottish companies have joined ELITE, the London Stock Exchange Group’s programme for fast-growing companies and have formed the first exclusively Scottish cohort as part of the launch of ELITE Scotland.

The launch is the first initiative of its kind for ELITE in the UK and builds on the existing contingent of Scottish companies within the programme.

More than 1000 companies have joined ELITE from 40 countries across 35 sectors.

The seven new companies are tech companies Glasgow-based Incremental, East Kilbride-based Cutitronics, Glasgow-headquartered Systal and Glasgow-based Encompass, Troon-based transport business CGL Logistics, Glencairn Crystal from East Kilbride and Shetland-based engineering business Ocean Kinetics.

They join the existing contingent of Scottish companies in ELITE including M Squared Lasers, Skyscanner and BrewDog.

ELITE Scotland is being launched in collaboration with Scottish Enterprise and Highlands and Islands Enterprise to support the growth of Scotland’s most ambitious companies.

To celebrate the launch of ELITE Scotland, David Schwimmer, CEO, London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG) Luca Peyrano, CEO of ELITE and the First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, welcomed the seven Scottish company CEOs to open trading in London this morning.

The seven new Scottish companies represent a diverse set of businesses providing products and services from enterprise technology solutions to industrial engineering.

Scottish companies will benefit from the core ELITE offering to help companies reach their next stage of growth.

ELITE provides education, business support and mentoring, networking, access to its community of Scottish and global investors, as well as ELITE’s own funding platform.

ELITE Scotland will feature tailored events, training and a mentorship network in Scotland. ELITE companies become part of the global community of more than 1000 companies and more than 400 advisers and investors, remaining members for the long term.

David Schwimmer said: “London Stock Exchange Group is pleased to be supporting ambitious entrepreneurial Scottish businesses through ELITE.

“By providing these high-growth companies with the skills, networks and access to capital, ELITE helps companies reach their next stage of growth and compete on a global stage.

“ELITE Scotland builds on the Group’s commitment to Scotland’s businesses and the immense talent and potential they offer to provide the innovation, jobs and economy of the future.”

The First Minister said: “Scotland’s business community is dynamic and innovative, and the Scottish Government will continue to play our part in supporting its long-term success, including helping it to address the challenges posed by Brexit.

“London Stock Exchange Group’s global ELITE programme has helped many companies around the world to secure funding, succeed and grow – including some from Scotland such as BrewDog and Skyscanner.

“I’m very pleased there is now a dedicated Scottish programme – ELITE Scotland – bringing together investors, public sector agencies and some of Scotland’s best and most ambitious companies.

“My warm congratulations to the initial cohort of companies that have signed up, and I’m sure many more in the future shall benefit from this fantastic initiative.”

Luca Peyrano, CEO, ELITE said: “I am delighted to welcome these seven new Scottish companies today, with whom we launch ELITE Scotland, becoming part of our global ELITE network.

“Jointly with Scottish Enterprise, Scottish Investment Bank and Highlands and Islands Enterprise, we look forward to working with Scotland’s vibrant businesses, providing them access to the expertise, networks and funding they need to achieve their potential.

“ELITE is delighted to support Scotland’s most ambitious companies, connecting them to capital and supporting them to compete on a global stage, as well as working to develop a connected funding ladder for such businesses.

“The launch of ELITE Scotland today underlines the track record and enormous potential of high-growth Scottish businesses.”

Paul Lewis, managing director of International Operations, Scottish Enterprise said: “Initiatives like the ELITE programme have proven to be essential platforms for promising home-grown businesses to scale-up their operations and fulfil their undoubted growth potential.

“Working with our colleagues at Highlands and Islands Enterprise, we have helped to identify the companies forming this first ELITE Scotland cohort – seven ambitious, fast-growing Scottish enterprises that will benefit from joining a vibrant global community of entrepreneurs, advisers and investors.”

Original Source:


G&M bottles ‘oldest’ Glen Grant 70 Year Old

January 30, 2019

Gordon & MacPhail has released a 70-year-old Glen Grant – the ‘oldest’ whisky from the Speyside distillery ever bottled.


The expression, distilled in 1948 – six years before barley rationing restrictions were lifted following WWII, has been released as part of the independent bottler’s Private Collection with a price tag of £17,500.

Matured in Cask #2154, a first-fill Sherry butt filled on 11 June 1948, the whisky is said to have notes of ‘dried fruit, orange zest and cracked black pepper’ with a ‘charred oak finish’.

Bottled at 48.6% abv, just 210 hand-blown crystal decanters have been produced.

Stephen Rankin, director of prestige at Gordon & MacPhail, and a fourth generation member of the Urquhart family, said: ‘Four generations of my family have carefully nurtured Cask 2154 over its 70 years to produce this unique whisky.

‘My great-grandfather, John, selected the first-fill Sherry butt in 1948 to fill with new make spirit from Glen Grant.

‘My family has patiently watched over this cask, regularly monitoring and sampling the whisky, recognising the right moment to bottle it at its ultimate peak.

‘This masterpiece epitomises the skill and craft involved in matching a cask to new make spirit, as well as our dedication to creating unique and intriguing whiskies.’

Gordon & MacPhail’s 1948 Glen Grant single malt is available to purchase from specialist retailers worldwide, and will be release in the US in the spring.

Its launch follows the recent release of a 50-year-old single cask whisky from Caol Ila, also the oldest expression from the Islay distillery to be bottled.

Original Article:

A £100,000 whisky collection in the one trunk

December 7, 2018