Spirited accountants: The rise of the Distillers Company

William J. Jackson, Audrey S. Paterson, Darren Jubb

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


Little has been written about the role of accounting in the development of the Scotch whisky industry to the ubiquitous presence it has today. This chapter shows how the oversight of the tax authorities contributed to the industry becoming a highly calculative environment. It also shows how accounting was used ruthlessly by the industry players, sometimes fraudulently, to gain advantage in a heated business environment. The tensions created by alternate accounting treatments then repeatedly prevented formation of an industry monopoly, until the head of DCL broke the deadlock and allowed the formation of the world’s largest alcoholic drinks company.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAccounting for Alcohol
Subtitle of host publicationAn Accounting History of Brewing, Distilling and Viniculture
EditorsMartin Quinn, João Oliveira
Place of PublicationOxford
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9781315185477
ISBN (Print)9781138737334
Publication statusPublished - 2018


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