Fortune Brands To Split Businesses; Continue Distilled Spirits

Fortune Brands announced its Board of Directors has unanimously approved in principle a separation of the company's three strong consumer businesses - distilled spirits, home and security, and golf products. 

The company intends to continue on as an independent, publicly-traded company focused solely on its distilled spirits business. Fortune Brands plans to offer a tax-free spin-off to shareholders of the home and security business into an independent, publicly-traded company. The same plan is being considered for the company's golf-business.

"We are taking the next logical step in the evolution of Fortune Brands, which we believe will maximize long-term value for our shareholders and create exciting opportunities within our businesses," said Bruce Carbonari, chairman and chief executive officer of Fortune Brands.

Three Businesses with Strong Positions and Headroom for Growth

The company's Beam Global Spirits & Wine Inc. unit, with $2.5 billion in annual revenue, is the largest U.S.-based spirits company and the fourth largest premium spirits business in the world.  Fortune Brands is the manufacturers of brands such as Jim Beam, Maker's Mark and Knob Creek as well as Sauza, Hornitos and El Tesoro

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