Suntory buys Jim Beam brand

<p>Suntory has snapped up the Jim Beam whisky brand.</p>

Japanese beverage company Suntory has confirmed that it has agreed a deal to buy US company Beam Inc, which is behind well-known brands such as Jim Beam whisky.

Suntory is already one of the biggest drinks companies in the world and the firm announced it would complete a deal worth $16 billion (£9.7 billion) for its rival.

The Japanese firm stated that under the terms of the agreement, it will pay $13.6 billion in cash for Beam Inc and take on Beam's debt too.

Beam's chief executive Matt Shattock is set to continue in the role even after Suntory's acquisition of the business has been completed.

Suntory previously snapped up the Lucozade and Ribena brands from GlaxoSmithKline as it continues its aggressive expansion plans within the global drinks market.

The firm then went on to float its soft drinks and food business in July last year on the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

Suntory is also known for the eponymous whisky brand that was featured in the Bill Murray film Lost In Translation in 2003.

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