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Whisky Hammer becomes first UK auction house to launch bonded warehouse service in Singapore

By Kyle Ritchie

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Specialist spirits auctioneer Whisky Hammer has announced the launch of its bonded warehouse service – a first for a UK auction house – in Singapore.

Founded in Aberdeenshire by Banffshire brothers Daniel and Craig Milne, Whisky Hammer has become the global destination for buyers and sellers of rare and collectable whiskies since launching in 2015.

The addition of the new warehouse service in Singapore will further strengthen the company’s offering, making it easier for Asian buyers to take part in monthly auctions while helping UK sellers achieve better prices as they tap into the continent’s growing interest in whisky collection.

Craig and Daniel Milne of Whisky Hammer.
Craig and Daniel Milne of Whisky Hammer.

Asia Pacific continues to be the world’s most valuable export region for whisky, with exports totalling more than USD2.2 billion in 2023. Five countries from the region ranked amongst the world’s top 10 export destinations and Asia Pacific was responsible for almost a third of all global whisky exports last year.

With Asia Pacific home to the world’s most valuable whisky collection and seeing surging interest in whisky auctions, including Whisky Hammer’s 100th auction that saw more than 5000 lots going under the hammer, this is an opportune moment to launch a value-added service to cater to the demands of a discerning customer base in Asia.

Customers first make their purchase from Whisky Hammer and ship their bottles from Scotland to Singapore.

Upon arrival in Singapore, the goods are safely delivered to the Singapore Bonded Warehouse.

A small entry fee covers all additional costs associated with transit “under bond”, and customers can then pay for their bottles to be stored and insured at the warehouse.

Customers who then wish to remove their bottles from the warehouse, can then pay to either be able to collect their purchases in person from the warehouse, engage a “white glove” concierge service that hand delivers their bottles to them at Changi Airport on their way out of Singapore, or have them shipped out of the warehouse to a local or foreign address.

Daniel Milne, co-founder and managing director of Whisky Hammer, said: "Our customer base in Asia continues to grow, and they are demanding more value-added services from us to complement our auctions.

“Our new bonded warehouse in Singapore is a sign of our commitment to investing in the needs of our customers in Asia and how we’re providing a seamless purchasing experience for them, while also supporting sellers back home in the UK looking to benefit from this growth in demand.

“The bonded warehouse service provides our customers with the convenience to store their whisky in a safe, controlled environment, and the flexibility to access it whenever they transit at Singapore Changi Airport.

“Our ‘white glove service’ ensures prompt point-to-point delivery of the customer’s whisky from the warehouse to them.

“We’re confident that this offering is a cost effective means to empowering those looking to start a whisky collection or add to an existing one.”

The Singapore Bonded Warehouse is pursuant to the Singapore Customs’ Zero-GST Warehouse Scheme.

Approved companies such as Whisky Hammer can store imported non-dutiable goods, including spirits such as whisky, for an indefinite period of time in a designated area licensed by the Singapore Customs, with the Goods and Services Tax (GST) suspended.

Customers are not required to pay GST or duties when their bottles are delivered to or picked up by them at the airport to be brought onwards to their next destination as part of their duty-free liquor concession. GST is only payable if they were to take local delivery within Singapore.

The launch of Whisky Hammer’s bonded warehouse service in Singapore coincides with its current auction.

The June auction is now live and ends on Sunday, June 23 at 10pm (SST)/ 3pm (UK). It features around 2000 unique, rare and collectible whiskies with headline lots being the oldest ever Japanese single malt whisky, the Yamazaki 55 Year Old which was last sold by Whisky Hammer in November 2022 for £380,000 / ~SG$655,000, and “The Reach”, an 81 Year Old (1940) Macallan.

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