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In global gambit, Suntory bets big on US bourbon maker

TOKYO -- Suntory Holdings is making a risky bet with its daring takeover of U.S. bourbon maker Beam, part of efforts to transform itself into a leading spirits firm in the global market.

     Suntory President Nobutada Saji has been eager to snap up big overseas firms, but a deal in excess of 1 trillion yen ($9.4 billion) had widely been considered a tall order. The $16 billion acquisition, which Saji described as "a once-in-a-lifetime gamble, is expected to help accelerate the company's expansion.

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