Iceland president buys Borgarnes distillery

President and founder of Iceland supermarkets in the UK, Malcolm Walker, has been revealed as the main investor behind the purchase of Catco Vín ehf. in Iceland (the country).

Catco Vín runs an alcoholic drinks plant in Borgarnes and used to be owned by Ölgerðin Egill Skallagrímsson. Among the drinks it produces is the now world-recognised Reyka vodka brand.

The sale price of the company is not public knowledge. Magnús Arnar Arngrímsson, an economist and the company’s new CEO told DV that the plan is to increase exports of spirits made with Icelandic water; especially Martin Miller gin which is quickly gaining a foothold in the British market.

DV has received tip-offs that Lárus Welding, the former director of Glitnir bank who is under criminal investigation following the bank’s collapse, has been involved in the sale of Catco Vín. Magnús confirmed that Lárus has acted as an adviser on behalf of Malcolm Walker; but said that he did not put any money into the deal himself. Magnús and Lárus are good friends who began work at Glitnir Bank around the same time. Magnús ended up as head of investment banking at Glitnir and also worked at its successor, Íslandsbanki after the crash.