Japan's Suntory Holdings Limited said Monday it reached an agreement to acquire U.S. based Beam Inc., whose brands include Jim Beam bourbon and Sauza tequila, for $16 billion.

"I am delighted that we can announce this agreement with Beam, a company with a portfolio of leading global brands," Suntory president and chairman Nobutada Saji said.

Suntory is paying $13.6 billion, or $83.50 per share for Beam, a 24 percent premium from Friday's closing price of $66.97.

The debt being assumed by the privately held Japanese company as part of the deal pushes the total value of the acquisition to about $16 billion.

"The transaction will create a stronger global player in premium spirits with annual net sales of spirits products exceeding $4.3 billion. Its combined portfolio of leading brands will include Beam's Jim Beam, Maker's Mark and Knob Creek bourbons, Teacher's and Laphroaig Scotch whiskies, Canadian Club whisky, Courvoisier cognac, Sauza tequila, and Pinnacle vodka, and Suntory's leading Japanese whiskies Yamazaki, Hakushu, Hibiki, and Kakubin, Bowmore Scotch whisky and Midori liqueur," Suntory said.

The two companies already had an agreement in place under which Suntory sold Beam's products in Japan, while the U.S. liquor company sold Suntory's alcoholic beverages in several Asian markets.

"I believe this combination will create a spirits business with a product portfolio unmatched throughout the world and allow us to achieve further global growth. We are particularly excited about the prospect of working more closely with Beam's excellent management and employees who will play an integral part in the growth of the business," Saji said. EFE