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Maverick Drinks in Tunbridge Wells secures £50,000 export deal with Chicago-based Marsalle Imports for single malt whiskeys

By Chris Price

A drinks company has earned its largest ever export order after doing a deal with a US retailer.

Maverick Drinks secured a £50,000 order for single malt whiskies with Chicago-based Marsalle Imports just two months after returning from a UK Trade and Investments-funded trip to the United States.

Established in 1994, the Tunbridge Wells-based company only begun exporting a year ago and has since secured orders across the EU.

Maverick Drinks' head of brand development Michael Vachon
Maverick Drinks' head of brand development Michael Vachon

The US deal – for its whiskeys made by That Boutique-y Whisky Company – is their first order outside the continent.

The company are now set to expand beyond Chicago to other north American markets – working with UKTI – and also hope to visit Canada and Mexico later in the year.

Maverick Drinks head of brand development Michael Vachon said: “This order marks the beginning of our expansion across the US and the continued development of our global brands.

“It’s a great example of how an entirely British-owned company is creating a completely unique product in a crowded global market place.


“There are hundreds and hundreds of gins, and thousands of whiskys out there, but the spirits we produce here in Tunbridge Wells have managed to attract worldwide attention.

“Our portfolio of internationally recognised award winning spirits have the taste and branding that buyers around the world are looking for.”

The news comes as the International Festival of Business, the biggest trade fair in the UK in over 60 years, enters its final week in Liverpool.

UKTI international trade adviser Peter Warren said: “While it may seem that the market for spirits in the US is saturated, Maverick’s order shows that there is still a market for high quality boutique products.

“The super-premium gin market in the USA is showing evidence of growth, and a number of new London gins are taking advantage of the opportunity to market artisanal spirits from over here.

“Provenance and craftsmanship are becoming key drivers of consumer taste in quality gins.”

Mr Vachon added: “When we began working with UKTI we certainly didn’t have any expectations – but the support and guidance has been above and beyond, and I’d certainly say we wouldn’t be in the position we are without UKTI’s support.”

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