CEO: Diageo Doesn’t Need to Buy Beam to Expand

glass of whisky 630 whiskeyOn Tuesday, the head of one of the world’s largest distillers dismissed speculation that it might acquire a rival whiskey producer.

Speaking with journalists at an investor meeting, Diageo (DEO) CEO Ivan Menezes, said that the company already had a “strong” position in the North American whiskey market and didn’t “need to” purchase Beam (BEAM), which makes the Knob Creek, Jim Beam and Maker’s Mark brands of whiskey, Reuters notes.

Diageo already controls 23% of the U.S. and Canadian whiskey market. The company is planning to launch two new ultra-premium whiskey brands next year.

While Diageo may not be interested in BEAM, Menezes said the company is still pursuing acquisitions in other markets. He singled out the African beer market, suggesting that Diageo would “definitely look” at any opportunities there.

Shares of Diageo fell modestly in Wednesday morning trading, while Beam moved slightly lower.

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