Financial Insights -
How Whisky Cask Investment Works
How Whisky Cask Investment Works
Unlike many traditional investments, Whisky Casks allow investors to control and influence their investment directly. A trusted tangible asset, casks have shown incredible resilience in turbulent times.

But how do you take advantage of this, and how difficult is it for a first-time cask owner to avoid potential pitfalls? This article will explain the complete process, allowing you to decide if cask investment suits you.

Buying your Cask

The first step of the cask investment journey is, of course, purchasing a cask. Although this can be daunting for newcomers, it’s also the most exciting as you explore the incredible world of Scotch Whisky and learn the differences that make each distillery unique.

Despite Scotland boasting over 140 active distilleries spread over the six regions of Scotch Whisky, casks aren’t readily available to the public like bottles are. This is partly because of the strict rules and regulations about the storage of cask alcohol.

Thankfully, Whisky Partners has revolutionised the cask-buying process to make it easier than ever before. Sourcing stock from all over Scotland, Whisky Partners’ innovative online portal allows customers to view current stock, live pricing and even download fact sheets to learn more about each cask. With storage and insurance included, the world of cask ownership is no longer reserved for those in the know.

Managing Your Cask

Casks of Scotch must legally remain in a bonded warehouse facility within Scotland until bottling. During this period, the spirit matures, taking upon more flavour and colour from the wood surrounding it. Although opening accounts with bonded warehouses is difficult for most individuals, Whisky Partners includes complimentary storage for a set number of years with each cask sold. Our experts are on hand to discuss extensions, visits and much more.

Whilst maturing in the warehouses, a small percentage of alcohol will naturally evaporate from the spirit. This is known as the angel’s share, and it enables casks to be classified as a wasting asset, exempt from Captial Gains Tax. Although this classification is a financial advantage to most, the Angel’s Share can dramatically impact the value of the cask if left unchecked. As Scotch Whisky must be sold at a minimum of 40% ABV, it’s crucial the casks strength doesn’t fall below this crucial value. This issue mainly affects older casks and can easily be avoided with regular regauging, a low-cost service that Whisky Partners can help arrange for all our clients.

Small samples can be drawn from the cask for inspection during the regauging process, and with expert advice, the spirit can be moved into a different cask type to change its characteristics. Known as re-racking, the spirit can be moved into specialist cask types such as Sherry, Red Wine and even Rum to create a more desirable final product. The ability to create a more desirable product and shape the profile of the final spirit allows cask owners far more control than other, more traditional, types of investment.

Selling Your Cask

When you exit your cask investment, Whisky Partners will be by your side to help you navigate the various options available.

Depending on the age of the cask and the spirit within, demand will vary between fellow investors wishing to mature the cask further and independent bottlers who will look to bottle older spirit immediately.

In either case, selling the cask whole will avoid further tax payments. Whisky Partners can help you find buyers through our platform of investors, our existing relationships with independent bottlers, or by assisting you in listing the cask at auction.

Alternatively, you can bottle your Whisky yourself for either sale or private consumption. It is worth noting that bottling fees, customs and & excise duty and VAT will be due at that point. Our sister brand Limited Whisky can assist with all private bottling enquiries and offer invaluable insight and expertise to realise your vision.

In Conclusion

The value of aged whisky increases as its supply diminishes over time and demand continues to grow. Investing in a cask of whisky not only offers potential financial gains but also provides a distinctive and enjoyable experience. Owning a cask of whisky allows investors to diversify their portfolio whilst protecting against inflation, making it an appealing and enjoyable investment option.

Our dedicated team is here to help start your cask ownership journey and answer any further questions you may have. For free, expert advice, speak to one of our dedicated Portfolio Managers today.

Alternatively, you can view our current stock of casks by logging into the online portal here.  Our online portal is now also available on mobile, with dedicated apps for both iOS and Android.

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