Liquor maker Beam sold for $16 billion

Written By Sun-Times Wire Posted: 01/13/2014, 07:02am

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Jim Beam logoDeerfield-based Beam, the maker of Jim Beam and Maker’s Mark alcohol brands, has agreed to be acquired by Japan’s Suntory Holdings Ltd. for $16 billion, including debt.

Suntory has a portfolio of spirits, with whiskies including Yamazaki and Hakushu as well as Midori liqueur and other beverages. It already distributes Beam’s products in Japan. Beam distributes Suntory’s products in Singapore and other Asian markets.

Suntory President and Chairman Nobutada Saji said in a statement that the acquisition will help Suntory further its global growth.

The combined company is expected to have annual sales of spirits products of more than $4.3 billion.

Beam President and CEO Matt Shattock and the Deerfield company’s current management will continue to run the business.

‚ÄúTogether we will be a global leader in distilled spirits with the No. 3 position in premium spirits and a dynamic portfolio across key categories,” Shattock said in a news release.

Suntory will pay $83.50 per share, a 25 percent premium to Beam’s Friday closing price of $66.97. The companies put the deal’s value at about $16 billion, including debt.

Suntory plans to fund the deal with available cash and fully committed financing from The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ.

Both companies’ boards unanimously approved the transaction, which is targeted to close in the second quarter.

The deal needs approval from Beam Inc. stockholders.

via The Associated Press

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