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PRESS RELEASE8 Apr 2014

Diageo launches Haig Club – a new Scotch Whisky – in partnership with David Beckham and Simon FullerDownload file

Diageo launches Haig Club – a new Scotch Whisky – in partnership with David Beckham and Simon Fuller

Diageo, the world’s leading premium drinks business, announces today the global launch of Haig Club Single Grain Scotch Whisky, in partnership with global sporting icon David Beckham and British entrepreneur Simon Fuller. Working alongside Diageo, Beckham and Fuller will play a fundamental role in developing the brand, its strategy and positioning. David Beckham will also lead the promotion of a responsible drinking programme for Haig Club, which is at the heart of the brand.

Haig Club is a new innovation from the House of Haig, Scotland’s oldest grain whisky dynasty and makers of Haig Blended Scotch Whisky and Dimple Scotch Whisky. Built on 400 years of distilling history, the House of Haig can trace its whisky producing roots back to the seventeenth century. In 1824 John Haig established the Cameronbridge Distillery and it was there that he pioneered the art of producing grain whisky in continuous Coffey and Stein stills – an invention which laid the foundations for the growth and success of the modern Scotch Whisky industry. Haig Club is born of that Haig family legacy of innovation and excellence in whisky creation.

David Gates, Diageo’s Global Head of Premium Core Spirits, commented: “Whisky is experiencing a continued global renaissance and like many of the world’s most respected whisky experts, we believe this will be the year that grain whisky breaks into the mainstream and gains the recognition it deserves. Diageo has a proven track record in Scotch Whisky innovation and we have applied this expertise through the House of Haig in liquid development and craftsmanship, creating a sophisticated new whisky in Haig Club.

“David Beckham and Simon Fuller are renowned for breaking boundaries and shaking up markets in every sector in which they work. We are immensely proud to partner with them on our first large scale grain whisky innovation.”

Beckham commented: "The House of Haig has a rich history and I’m proud to be working at the heart of a home-grown brand which has built an incredible heritage over 400 years. Working closely with Diageo, we look forward to collaborating on Haig Club, valuing and treasuring the Haig traditions while reinventing this whisky for years to come.”

Simon Fuller said: “This is a long term commitment. It is important to us that we create something unique and of great quality. With Haig Club we have an opportunity to push boundaries and help shape how Scotch will be perceived in the future, it’s an exciting proposition. We could not wish for a better partner than Diageo.”

Syl Saller, Diageo's Chief Marketing Officer said: “We see this launch as a terrific accelerator for the whole sector, and one that really strengthens whisky’s position as the most vibrant spirits category.

“Consumers are constantly searching for new and different tastes and experiences and they are especially excited by those that come from authentic, heritage brands. And Haig Club certainly ticks those boxes. Throughout his career, David Beckham has been at the forefront of emerging trends and rewritten the rules of what it means to be a modern sportsman and businessman, and we are pleased he has decided to turn his hand to Scotch.”

Haig Club has been crafted using a unique process that combines grain whisky from three cask types. This creates a fresh, clean style that showcases butterscotch and toffee for an ultra-smooth taste that the company believes will be enjoyed not only by current whisky drinkers, but also by those who have always wanted to try whisky.

Respected whisky authority Dave Broom is one of the few drinks experts to have tasted Haig Club. He described it as “a hugely versatile spirit, and I expect bartenders will love what they can do with it. Forget everything you thought you knew about Scotch…”

Haig Club will be launched later in the year.  Details around pricing and availability will be announced nearer launch.

Ends

For further information please contact:

Cecilia Coonan cecilia.g.coonan@Diageo.com +44 (0)20 8978 2744

NOTES TO EDITORS

About Diageo

Diageo is the world's leading premium drinks business with an outstanding collection of beverage alcohol brands across spirits, beer and wine. These brands include Johnnie Walker, Crown Royal, JεB, Windsor, Buchanan’s and Bushmills whiskies, Smirnoff, Cîroc and Ketel One vodkas, Baileys, Captain Morgan, Tanqueray and Guinness.

Diageo is a global company, with its products sold in more than 180 countries around the world. The company is listed on both the New York Stock Exchange (DEO) and the London Stock Exchange (DGE). For more information about Diageo, its people, brands, and performance, visit us at www.diageo.com. For our global resource that promotes responsible drinking through the sharing of best practice tools, information and initiatives, visit DRINKiQ.com.

Celebrating life, every day, everywhere.

About David Beckham

David Beckham is one of the world’s most iconic sportsmen. With a professional football career spanning over twenty years, he captained his country for six years, won the British Premier League six times, the UEFA Champions League (with Manchester United) in 1999, and was runner up in the FIFA ‘World Player of the Year’ Awards in 1999 and 2001.

Having left Manchester United in 2003 for four successful seasons with Real Madrid, Beckham moved to LA Galaxy in 2007, taking the team to two MLS Cup Championships (2011, 2012) while participating in a unique time-share agreement with AC Milan, first in January 2009 and then again in January 2010.

Now retired, Beckham has been appointed global ambassador for the Chinese Football Association and has announced that he will co-own a Major League Soccer expansion team in Miami.

Married to Victoria and father to four children, Beckham’s fame extends far beyond the pitch. Noted as a keen advocate of charitable work, he has supported UNICEF since his days at Manchester United, becoming a Goodwill Ambassador in 2005 with a special focus on UNICEF's Sports for Development program. David is also on the Leadership Council for charity Malaria No More.

An astute businessman, David Beckham will play an integral role in developing the Haig Club brand, its strategy and positioning. In addition, he will lead the promotion of the responsible drinking programme for Haig Club, which is at the heart of the brand.

About Simon Fuller

Simon Fuller is the founder of XIX Entertainment and the creator of the most popular entertainment show in America of the last ten years (American Idol: source AC Neilsen), Simon Fuller is known for his work in discovering and guiding an impressive list of music artists that include Annie Lennox, Kelly Clarkson, The Spice Girls, Amy Winehouse, Carrie Underwood, Will Young, Lisa Marie Presley, Cathy Denis and others.

In 2011 iTunes named Simon Fuller ‘the most successful manager of the digital era’ and a year later he was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his contribution to the global entertainment industries.

In addition to his TV and music work, Simon Fuller’s business oversees the careers of David Beckham, Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton, Tour De France winner Sir Bradley Wiggins and Grand Slam winning tennis champion Andy Murray, as well as being the joint owner of two highly respected fashion businesses with the designers Roland Mouret and Victoria Beckham.

Simon Fuller has long standing associations with several charitable initiatives, including Greenpeace, Amnesty International, Save The Children, The Prince’s Trust, Malaria No More, The United Nations Foundation and Comic Relief.

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