Japanese company buys iconic Kentucky bourbon brands

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Kentucky Press News Service

Suntory, a giant in Japan's spirits and beverage industry, has reached an agreement with Beam, the maker of Jim Beam and Maker's Mark bourbons, to purchase the iconic Kentucky brands.
The deal is said to be worth more than $13 billion.
Suntory already had an agreement with Beam for distribution of each other's products in overseas markets.
Both companies boards reportedly approved the transaction which should close in the second quarter of the year. But the Beam stockholders will still have to approve the deal.
Suntory said the Beam management team would remain in place in its Chicago-area offices.
Maker's Mark CEO Rob Samuels released the following statement on Facebook:
"The announcement of the agreement for Suntory Holdings to acquire Beam Inc. has certainly sparked a lot of conversation. We’d like to assure you that down here in Loretto, it’s bourbon as usual. We will stay true to our heritage and tradition, and continue to craft our bourbon exactly the same way we have since my grandfather made the first batch of Maker’s Mark almost 60 years ago.”