Heaven Hill Distilleries Acquires Worldwide Rights to Admiral Nelson Rums fro Luxco

BARDSTOWN, KY – Heaven Hill Distilleries, Inc., the nation’s largest family owned and operated distilled spirits company, announced it has acquired the worldwide rights to the Admiral Nelson family of rums from Luxco, Inc. The Admiral Nelson brand is the spirits industry’s fastest growing spiced rum, and is the second largest selling spiced rum in the United States.

“We are most excited to add Admiral Nelson to our Heaven Hill spirits portfolio,” said Max L. Shapira, president of Heaven Hill. “Admiral Nelson is a very strong brand that is experiencing phenomenal growth in a rapidly expanding segment of the rum category. Its five year growth has outpaced both the overall spirits industry and the rum category specifically, and it has won multiple Impact Hot Brand Awards and Beverage Information Group Growth Brand Awards. We believe our sales and distribution capabilities will further build on this success in the coming years.”

The Admiral Nelson family of rums is comprised of the flagship Admiral Nelson Spiced Rum, Admiral Nelson’s 101 Proof Spiced Rum, Coconut, Raspberry, Vanilla and the recently-introduced Cherry flavor. The world’s top spirits critics and tasters also recognize the quality of the Admiral Nelson brand, having awarded it multiple medals at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition and “Best in Show Platinum Award” at the World Beverage Competition.

According to multiple industry sources, Admiral Nelson is the number five selling overall rum brand in the United States and the second largest brand in the very popular spiced rum segment. In awarding Admiral Nelson its fifth straight “Hot Brand Award”, Impact Newsletter cited the brand’s “25% volume boost to 675,000 cases” in 2010.

Donn Lux, President and Chief Executive Officer at St. Louis-based Luxco, Inc., stated that “We at Luxco have been proud to launch and develop the Admiral Nelson brand and take it to its current position as the nation’s number two spiced rum. I commend our sales force for an incredible job in doing so and thank all of our distributor and retail partners for their collective efforts in building this wonderful brand. It fits squarely into Heaven Hill’s spirits portfolio and we are sure they will continue the brand’s meteoric rise. I congratulate Max and his team and wish them all the best in taking Admiral Nelson to the next level.”

Luxco was advised by J.P. Morgan Securities LLC on the sale. The parties expect the transaction to close by July 31, 2011 following customary approvals.

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