View Full Version : Jim Beam Buys Maker's Mark!

04-20-2005, 22:47
There's a headline I never thought I'd see. Wow!

04-21-2005, 04:10
The full press release can be downloaded from www.allieddomecq.com. (http://www.allieddomecq.com.) Makes for interesting reading. It states that if the deal with Pernod Ricard goes through (presumably referring to regulatory and other conditions or approvals) Fortune Brands will buy "Canadian Club" (and Maker's Mark as Chuck noted). Wiser's is separately listed as a brand on allieddomecq.com but not mentioned in the press release; I am unclear therefore whether Jim Beam (Fortune Brands) will buy only Canadian Club-brand products or also the Corby brands. Hiram Walker Distillers in Canada, makers of Canadian Club, is wholly owned by Allied Domecq of U.K.. Corby Distillers in Canada is majority controlled by Hiram Walker and therefore indirectly by Allied Domecq. Hiram Walker does the distilling and bottling for the Corby whisky brands (Wiser's, Royal Reserve). So I am not sure if Pernod Ricard would acquire the Wiser's and Royal Reserve brands or Fortune Brands would get them plus Canadian Club. I wonder also who gets the Windsor distillery, I would think Beam does and that Beam would make the Corby brands for Pernod Ricard under contract if Pernod Ricard gets those brands since I believe Pernod Ricard does not currently own a distilling plant in Canada. I suppose Pernod Ricard could get the plant and then make CC for Fortune Brands, but I would think that unlikely. News stories in the Canadian business press later today probably will clarify the situation.


04-21-2005, 04:44
What is the history of the ownership of Maker's Mark, anyway? I'm mostly interested in when the Samuels' originally sold it and to whom.

04-21-2005, 04:58
It was sold to Hiram Walker by the Samuels family in 1981. Bill Samuels' father had founded the distillery in 1954. Hiram Walker was later bought by the entity that is now Allied Domecq. Bill Samuels has continued to have a strong influence in the way Maker's Mark is run.


04-21-2005, 07:51
The Courier Journal had some information about this subject...I have attached a PDF file if anyone wants to keep it in their records http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Bill Samuels, said no one involved in the Allied Domecq talks has spoke with him but previous sales of the brand has little effect. I would be surprised if that changes...

I note...Maker's Mark as producing 600,000 cases and has had a 13% increase annually...For some reason, I assumed that number was much higher.

Bettye Jo

04-21-2005, 18:14
If Jim Beam has any sense (a big "if") they will keep Maker's Mark as a separate entity and not let the Deerfield boys get their paws on it. For one thing, it competes directly with Knob Creek and perhaps also with Jim Beam Black Label. They'll be better off leaving it that way. Bill says past sales haven't had any effect, but he's never been owned by a company that considers itself a bourbon company.

04-28-2005, 22:33
It ain't over till it's over...

Now it's a three way bid...Jim Beam Fortune Brands, got the bid...


Constellation and Brown Forman jumped in on it...

Now...Diageo is going for it too...

Bettye Jo

04-29-2005, 00:13
The interesting thing about Diageo's participation is that analysts say Maker's Mark is primarily what Diageo wants (and maybe Courvoisier too). Who loses in that deal? Tommy Bulleit.

http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/iagreejeff.gif (in all things)

06-13-2005, 15:00
The rumblings I am picking up with my ear to the ground say that it's a done deal.
I guess we can wait for the official word from Jim Beam soon.

I say 3 cheers! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif

I'll keep an eye out for a load of Red Wax coming into Clermont! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif

I wonder if I can detect a wheat mash waifing thru the air?

06-13-2005, 15:37
Sad, Sad, Sad. Ain't nothin' sacred? http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/puke.gif

06-13-2005, 19:45
I say 3 cheers! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif

Respectfully, I ask why?


06-13-2005, 20:02
I say 3 cheers! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif

Respectfully, I ask why?


Not addressed to me, but I'll take a shot at an answer -- since I feel much the same way as Bobby.
1) Beam does not have a wheated bourbon in its lineup, so this rounds them out; and Maker's Mark has significant enough brand image it will be hard even for Beam to justify tinkering with the basic product.
2) Many of us here acknowledge the Maker's Mark is okay, but bland, bourbon -- bland mostly because there is a single iteration distributed domestically using bourbon most feel would be much better older. Perhaps Beam's distilling and storage capacity will allow Maker's Mark -- which currently has its hands full just maintaining supply to its single bottling -- to offer other ages/proof/"expressions" not currently available.
Seems like win-win, to me, for the two companies, and a proably-can't-lose, but-might-benefit situation for us bourbonians.

06-14-2005, 15:52
Beam's ownership of Maker's Mark will be a good thing only if the Romans learn as much from the Greeks as the Greeks do from the Romans.

06-14-2005, 18:52
What Tim said.

Seriously, Jim Beams ownership of Makers Mark will be the best possible scenario for Beam, Makers and us. For all the clamour for custom distilled spirits, Beam could run a few days of wheat at Booker Noe Plant or Clermont that would equal the 24 hours a day/6 days a week( It is not legal to run the stills on Sunday but fermenting mash works in the tubs on the Lords Day)That Makers is presently running to only barely keep up. They could use the tiny, by comparison,stills at Makers to pull out the stops and trump, by God, anything B-F dreams of doing at L&G. The prospect of Dr Dalton and Freddie Noe( he has recently become associate distiller for Beam) and Dave Pickerell having a mind meld and the freedom to move across the 3 plants , just opens it all up for endless possibilities.They have someone distilling at Booker Noes Plant as well but I do not know who it is. That and Fortunes bottomless pockets, the already number 1 Bourbon in the world, that speaks of the most efficient production and marketing arm in the industry. Endless possibilities looms on the horizon, I view all that as a positive.

That's where it could all go as I see it. That nearly everyone cannot get excited by those prospects, is beyond me. Think about it, it really fits the model we have all hoped for, for a long time now. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif

06-14-2005, 20:29
All right, Bobby's got me excited with his scenario.

I had posted not long back about current Weller and Fitzgerald being twin son's of different mothers, but a well aged Maker's could be a third sibling, due to the help from Pappy Van Winkle to the Samuels family of a mashbill, yeast and design of still (I read all these here, but wouldn't be able to otherwise verify).

Could the bourbon successor to S-W not come from HH or BT, but MM? Is it already being made, but is just lacking more years in the wood and a bit less hustle and bustle? Best of all could the successor be coming from ALL 3?
And suddenly, I'm seeing the golden age coming on. (And then I wake up, and turn back to myself)

Roger - Shhh! Whiskey Sleeping - Hodges