Fortune Brands reaches deal to sell golf business

By the Associated Press | May 20, 2011 | 8:45 AM EDT

DEERFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Fortune Brands says it has reached a deal to sell its Acushnet Co. golf business to a group of Korean investors including athletic company Fila Korea Ltd. for $1.2 billion.

The business includes the Titleist and FootJoy brands.

The deal is a major step in Fortune's plan to break itself up. It plans to separate its Beam liquor business and its home and security businesses into two companies later this year

The company says Titleist is the top-selling golf ball and a leader in golf clubs, while FootJoy is tops in golf shoes.

The group buying the brands is led by Fila Korea and Mirae Asset Private Equity, Korea's largest private equity firm.

Fortune expects to get $1.1 billion after taxes and expenses when the deal closes this summer.