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Tortuga - a new spirits distribution company
Published:  01 June, 2018

Tortuga Brands is the name of a new UK-based sales, marketing and distribution agency drinks company, representing spirits brands in the on and off trade in the UK, as well as offering a wider global distributor network for brands.

Tortuga, which is taken from the Spanish word for turtle, is said to to have  been established by an experienced team, including managing director Gary Hazell and board director Peter Davie, who claim to have had many years of success in the international drinks industry.

The company says it is set to offer a “fresh approach to brand building, looking to nurture super premium spirits both in the UK and globally, led by a team of seasoned professionals with a first-class network of contacts.”

It says several premium spirits have already made Tortuga Brands their exclusive distributor, including Willem Barentsz gin, Raven Rare blended scotch whisky, The Blue Beetle London dry gin, Xeco sherry and the Dark Matter portfolio from Scotland with the Spiced Rum brand, plus Chocolate Orange and Rhubarb liqueurs.

Tortuga Brands says it is looking to expand its portfolio across the premium spirits categories including, but not limited to, malt whisk(e)y, cognac, tequila and vodka. 

Hazell said: “Our ethos is to nurture growing brands by getting them to market quickly and in the most appropriate way, whilst making the most of our excellent global contacts taking brands into international markets.”

“We’re looking to expand our sales and marketing team in the UK and are actively recruiting recognised individuals in the industry to support our premium brand development.”

Tortuga Brands HQ is based at The Vintry in Ilford, sharing administrative resource with other drinks industry companies, including Mangrove.

Apparently the Tortuga (turtle) name comes from Hazell’s personal interest in the marine environment and the turtle. He has worked with Distilled Brands and Purity vodka, as well as Glenrothes single malt whisky at Berry Bros. & Rudd, where he met and worked with Davie. Hazell most recently worked on new business development with Franklin & Sons.

Davie has worked in the drinks industry for more than 25 years, including roles as global sales director at Berry Bros. & Rudd Spirits, He has lived in Singapore, as area director Asia-Pacific for BB&R, and has also managed the region for Matthew Gloag.  Davie is said to have set up international brand building agency Black Lab Partners in 2017 with co-founders Jeremy Parsons and Steve Webb, who also act as directors of Tortuga Brands.