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SWA appoints director of strategy and communication

Published:  16 May, 2018

The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) has appointed Gerry McFall as director of strategy and communication.

McFall, who joins the organisation with immediate effect, will in his new role oversee all facets of the SWA’s external relations including, public affairs, media relations and stakeholder engagement.

Most recently the director of global public affairs & communication campaigns at Leonardo Helicopters in Italy - a global aerospace company, McFall brought “a wealth of experience that would be crucial" in continuing to build on the recent success of Scotch Whisky, said the SWA.

“Gerry’s experience will add real strengths to the SWA, as we support our members and the industry to meet the challenges of today and tomorrow,” said chief executive Karen Betts.

With Scotch Whisky supporting over 40,000 jobs in Scotland and exporting over £4 billion annually, having strong leadership in place was crucial to safeguarding the drink’s future both at home and overseas, she added.

Gerry McFall said: “It’s important to face the challenges and seize the opportunities in our emerging trading relationships and I will bring all my experience and commitment to support continued industry growth.”

The appointment follows a record-breaking year for Scotch Whisky in 2017, with both value and volume sales on the rise.

Export sales of the popular tipple were up 8.9% (£356 million) to £4.36 billion on volumes up 1.6% - the equivalent of 1.23 billion bottles exported globally, according to the latest HMRC data for 2017 compared to the previous year.

The previous high for export value was £4.27 billion in 2012 (HMRC).