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Artisanal Spirits Company toasts warm welcome on AIM debut

·1-min read
<p>Artisanal sells craft single malts to more than 28,000 subscribers around the world, mostly online</p> (Mike Wilkinson)

Artisanal sells craft single malts to more than 28,000 subscribers around the world, mostly online

(Mike Wilkinson)

The owner of the Scotch Malt Whisky Society, Artisanal Spirits Company, saw shares rise as it began trading on London's junior AIM market on Friday.

SMWS, now trading under the ticker ART, sells craft single malts to more than 28,000 subscribers around the world, mostly online.

Artisanal, which bought the Edinburgh-based society from Glenmorangie in 2015, placed more than 69.6 million shares at a price of 112p in its IPO, implying a valuation of around £78 million. Shares rose to 117.5p in early trading on Friday.

More than 10% of Artisanal's UK customers bought shares in the listing, investing a total of £2.64 million. The IPO raised £15 million for the company and £11 million for selling shareholders. Newly-appointed chairman Mark Hunter, who previously ran Molson Coors, put in £1 million of his own cash.

Executive MD David Ridley told the Standard the firm is seeing growth in the US, and that executives plan to use the cash to open new venues and build up stocks.

He said: "We are listing so we can remain independent, and so that members can participate and take ownership. It is an opportunity for us to raise capital for the next segway for the business."

N+1 Singer was sole bookrunner and placing agent on the IPO.

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