Yesterday, Beam Global Spirits & Wine announced a major corporate reorganization. The brand portfolio is being realigned into three groups: bourbon, ‘mixables’ (rum, tequila, vodka and cordials) and ‘classics’ (cognac, scotch and Canadian whisky).
Beam’s bourbon portfolio includes Jim Beam, Maker’s Mark, Knob Creek, Booker’s, Baker’s, Basil Hayden, Old Grand-Dad, and Old Crow. The ‘mixables’ group includes Sauza Tequila, Cruzan Rum, and DeKuyper Cordials. The ‘classics’ group includes Laphroaig Single Malt, Teacher’s Blended Scotch, Courvoisier Cognac, and Canadian Club Canadian Whisky.
The three groups will have their own finance, operations and human resources functions, with profit-and-loss responsibility. Presumably, ‘operations’ includes production, i.e., the distilleries. All this suggests that the groups will not be simply marketing divisions, but more like wholly-owned and self-contained subsidiaries.
Sales will be separate.
Internationally, Beam Global will merge its two current European regions into one, resulting in three groups based on geography: Europe, Asia/Pacific, and Emerging Markets/Travel Retail.
From the point-of-view of a bourbon enthusiast, this is good news. In effect, Beam Global has set-up an independent company just to look after its American whiskey assets, a company that is free to compete aggressively against its own stable mates in the scotch, Canadian, and other spirits categories.