USA – Beam Suntory, the second largest premium spirits company in the US has expanded its national alignment with Southern Glazer’s, adding nine additional markets to its current 34 market distribution relationship.

The companies have entered into a nearly 11-year arrangement, in which Southern Glazer’s will represent Beam Suntory’s complete portfolio of brands in the additional nine markets, effective April 1, 2020.

Southern Glazer’s will distribute Beam Suntory’s complete portfolio of brands including the iconic Jim Beam and Maker’s Mark bourbon brands, Suntory whisky Kakubin and Courvoisier cognac across this 43-market footprint.

“Southern Glazer’s has been a significant partner in the growth of our business for 33 years,” commented Greg Hughes, President – North America at Beam Suntory.

“Our move to consolidate our business with Southern Glazer’s is part of a larger strategic imperative to simplify our routes to market, get closer to customers and consumers, and accelerate the premiumization of our portfolio.”

“We greatly appreciate that Beam Suntory has entrusted us with the responsibility to work with them on a national level,” added Wayne Chaplin, CEO of Southern Glazer’s.

“Utilizing our nationwide network and resources will significantly increase efficiencies for Beam Suntory and allow us to use economies of scale to achieve our joint business priorities. We look forward to many more years of success together.”

The arrangement comes shortly after Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirit sold the company’s beverage alcohol division operating in the Virgin Islands to CC One Virgin Islands.

CC One Virgin Islands is a member of CC1 Companies and also the official distributor of Coca-Cola sparkling and still brands in the USVI, BVI and Grand Cayman.

CC One Virgin Islands will continue to operate separately from the new entity created by the sale of Southern Glazer’s Wine and Spirits of the Caribbean, which was renamed CC1 Virgin Islands Wine and Spirits.

To further drive improved operational execution and enhanced talent development across all US markets, Southern Glazer’s recently reorganized its supply chain team to better leverage its senior leaders.

David Gneo, the former Vice President of Operations for the East Region was promoted to Vice President of Operations with National responsibility and will have the overall responsibility for division performance and strategic initiatives.

Joseph Merritt, the former Vice President of Operations for the Central Region has been promoted to Vice President of Fleet Operations.

The reorganization also included the creation of five new geographic zones: West, South Central, North Central, North East, and South East.

The company said that these geographical sub regions will allow the its most skilled and experienced operational leaders to extend their interaction to markets outside of their previous primary responsibility.