THE specialist international arm of wholesaler JW Filshill is stepping up its export efforts and is considering moving beyond just distributing beer.

Craft Beer Clan of Scotland, which was launched last year and now works with 20 brewers, is in advanced negotiations with importers in Thailand, Taiwan and South Korea.

The company, which is targeting a £2.5m turnover within three years, already has agreements in place in China, Hong Kong and Dubai.

The latest moves come after representatives from Craft Beer Clan attended the HoFex trade show in Hong Kong and ThaiFex in Bangkok last month. It is attending further trade events in China next month in both Beijing and Shanghai.

The company is also in early stage talks with gin producers and food companies about expanding its offer beyond beer.

Chris Miller, head of export and commercial operations at JW Filshill International, said: "Attending events such as HoFex and ThaiFex in these key, emerging markets will continue to be part of our short to medium-term strategy and we are currently exploring partnerships with Scottish gin and other producers to broaden our portfolio - our aspiration is to act as an international hub for the Scottish food and drink industry."

Along with that it is looking at distributors in Scandinavia, Canada, North America and Australia.

Mr Miller said: "Our international business is exceeding both our targets and expectations."

Among the breweries stocked by Craft Beer Clan are William Bros, Inveralmond, Eden, Deeside, West, Lerwick, Fyne Ales, Stewart Brewing and Black Wolf.

Along with Mr Miller, a former boss of Harviestoun Brewery, the other senior members of the Craft Beer Clan are chief executive Simon Hannah and David Moore, who spent more than a decade in Asia with Diageo.