Beam Completes Irish Whiskey Acquisition

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Beam Completes Irish Whiskey Acquisition

Beam Completes Irish Whiskey Acquisition
January 18
12:56 2012

US-based global spirits group Beam has completed its $95 million acquisition of Cooley Distillery, the Irish whiskey producer. The acquisition includes the Kilbeggan, Connemara, Tyrconnell and Greenore brands, as well as aging inventory and Cooley’s malt and grain distilleries in Dundalk and Kilbeggan in Ireland.

Cooley is one of only three sources for Irish whiskey and was the category’s only remaining independent producer. Beam expects the acquisition to be earnings neutral in 2012 reflecting substantial initial brand investment, and increasingly accretive in future years.

“As one of the world’s fastest-growing spirits companies, Beam is excited to enter one of the world’s fastest-growing spirits categories,” says Matt Shattock, president and chief executive of Beam.

“Beam can do in ten years what it would take Cooley, on its own, thirty years to do,” says John Teeling, chairman of Cooley Distillery. “The market opportunity for Irish whiskey is now and it is substantial. Beam has particular strengths in the main fast growing Irish whiskey markets and so will be well able to take advantage of this Irish renaissance.”

The Irish whiskey category grew 11.5% in 2010 to 4.86 million  cases according to Impact Databank. The leading markets for Irish whiskey, according to Impact, are the US,Ireland, the United Kingdom, France, South Africa and Germany. Cooley currently sells approximately 250,000 9-liter cases per year – divided among its brands, private label products and bulk sales to third-party customers – and has production capacity to support substantial future growth.

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