January 17, 2012

BEAM COMPLETES ACQUISITION OF COOLEY DISTILLERY

  • Beam Enters Fast-Growing Irish Whiskey Category
  • Opportunity to Expand Award-Winning Brands in U.S. and other Key Markets for Irish Whiskey
  • Dublin, Ireland and Deerfield, Illinois, January 17, 2012 - Beam Inc. (NYSE: BEAM), a leading global premium spirits company, today completed the acquisition of Cooley Distillery, the award-winning 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, Ireland. Cooley is one of only three sources for Irish whiskey and was the category's only remaining independent producer. The purchase price was approximately $95 million on a debt-free basis. 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," said Matt Shattock, president and chief executive officer of Beam. "We look forward to combining our whiskey expertise, brand-building firepower and strong routes to market with the experience, talent and passion of the Teeling family and the Cooley team to help take these award-winning brands to the next level. On behalf of the 3,200 Beam associates worldwide, we are delighted to welcome Cooley's talented workforce to the Beam family." Shattock added that Cooley's flagship Kilbeggan brand will join the ranks of Beam's Rising Star brands, which, along with the company's global Power Brands, are a focus for brand-building investment.

    "Beam can do in 10 years what it would take Cooley, on its own, 30 years to do," said 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. It is a bittersweet moment for myself and the other founders as we cede control but, having rebuffed many suitors, we were happy that Beam, which is a pre-eminent whiskey company, will build on the strong foundations laid down over 24 years. I want to thank the staff, shareholders, and close colleagues who have been on the journey. It is only the beginning."

    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 United States, 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.

    * * *

    About Beam Inc.

    As one of the world's leading premium spirits companies, Beam is Crafting the Spirits that Stir the World. Consumers from all corners of the globe call for the company's brands, including Jim Beam® Bourbon, Maker's Mark® Bourbon, Sauza® Tequila, Canadian Club® Whisky, Courvoisier® Cognac, Teacher's® Scotch Whisky, Laphroaig® Scotch Whisky, Cruzan® Rum, Hornitos ™ Tequila, Knob Creek® Bourbon, EFFEN® Vodka, Pucker™ Flavored Vodka, Larios® Gin, Whisky DYC®, DeKuyper® Cordials, and Skinnygirl® Cocktails. The Beam portfolio includes 10 of the world's top 100 premium spirits brands and some of the industry's fastest growing innovations. Beam is focused on delivering superior performance with its unique combination of scale with agility and a strategy of Creating Famous Brands, Building Winning Markets and Fueling Our Growth. Beam and its 3,200 passionate associates worldwide generated 2010 sales of $2.7 billion on volume of 33 million 9-liter cases.

    Headquartered in Deerfield, Illinois, Beam is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol BEAM and is included in the S&P 500 Index and the MSCI World Index. For more information on Beam, its brands, and its commitment to social responsibility, please visit www.beamglobal.com and www.drinksmart.com.

    About Cooley Distillery

    Cooley Distillery is the award winning independent Irish whiskey distillery. Established in 1987, Cooley takes its name from the location of its distillery, situated at the foothills of the Cooley Mountains, in Co. Louth. Cooley has an award winning portfolio of Irish whiskeys including Kilbeggan Irish whiskey, Tyrconnell Single Malt, Connemara Peated Single Malt and Greenore Single Grain Irish whiskey. To learn more about Cooley Distillery visit www.cooleywhiskey.com.

    Forward-Looking Statements

    This press release contains forward-looking statements, as that term is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements as to the expected earnings impact of the transaction and the expected benefits of the transaction. Readers are cautioned that these forward-looking statements speak only as of the date hereof, and the company does not assume any obligation to update, amend or clarify them to reflect events, new information or circumstances occurring after the date of this release. Actual results may differ materially from those projected as a result of certain risks and uncertainties, including but not limited to: general economic conditions and credit market instability; customer defaults and related bad debt expense; competitive market pressures (including pricing pressures); changes in customer preferences and trends; risks pertaining to strategic acquisitions and joint ventures, particularly financial and integration risks; any possible downgrades of the company's credit ratings; commodity and energy price volatility; risks associated with doing business outside the United States, including currency exchange rate risks; inability to attract and retain qualified personnel; the impact of excise tax increases and customs duties on distilled spirits; the status of the U.S. rum excise tax cover-over program; dependence on performance of distributors and other marketing arrangements; costs of certain employee and retiree benefits and returns on pension assets; tax law changes and/or interpretation of existing tax laws; potential liabilities, costs and uncertainties of litigation; ability to secure and maintain rights to trademarks and trade names; impairment in the carrying value of goodwill or other acquired intangible assets; disruptions at production facilities; risks related to the Home & Security spin-off; and other risks and uncertainties detailed from time to time in the Company's Securities and Exchange Commission filings.

    CONTACTS:

    Media Relations - Beam
    Clarkson Hine
    +1-847-444-7515
    Clarkson.Hine@beamglobal.com

    Investor Relations - Beam
    Tony Diaz
    +1-847-444-7690
    Tony.Diaz@beamglobal.com

    Cooley Distillery
    David O'Siochain
    +353 (0) 1649 6322
    David.Osiochain@pembrokecomms.ie


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