Inside these posts: Golf

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Fortune sees four types of golf bidders

(Tribune File Photo)

Fortune Brands Inc. expects its golf business to attract a special kind of bidder in addition to the usual suspects — rich people who like playing the game.

The company announced plans late last year to sell or spin off its golf business, which makes Titleist golf equipment, and spin off its home products business, which makes Simonton windows and Moen faucets, amid pressure from activist investor William Ackman. Get the full story »

Adidas, Nike tee up for Fortune golf unit

Initial takeover offers for Fortune Brands’ golf unit are expected to be submitted today by a range of bidders, including Adidas AG, Nike Inc and private equity firms, sources familiar with the situation said on Friday.

Fortune Brands said in December it would split off its golf and home products units under pressure from activist investor William Ackman.

CME Group to sponsor LPGA’s season-ender

From NBC | The commissioner of the LPGA Tour announced Sunday that Chicago-based CME Group will become the title sponsor of the season-ending Titleholders tournament at Grand Cypress in Orlando. The inaugural CME Group Titleholders will be played Nov. 17-20, and will replace the LPGA Tour Championship on the schedule.

State Farm severs ties with LPGA event

From The Central Illinois Pantagraph | Bloomington-based insurer State Farm Insurance said Friday that it will not renew its sponsorship with the LPGA tourney that has been held in Springfield for 36 years. This year’s event is set for June 9-13.

Fortune Brands profit up, separation on track

Consumer goods maker Fortune Brands posted a sharply higher quarterly profit that topped Wall Street’s expectations as an improving economy helped spur sales of premium liquor and Titleist golf clubs.

But the conglomerate said sales of its Simonton windows, up at a double-digit rate, were fueled by the expiration of a consumer tax credit for the purchase of energy-efficient home products. As a result, it expects the overall window market to fall at a mid-single-digit rate this year. Get the full story »

Fortune hires Morgan Stanley to auction golf unit

Fortune Brands has hired Morgan Stanley to auction its golf division, a sale that may fetch as much as $1.5 billion, Bloomberg reported, citing four people with knowledge of the matter. Get the full story »

Northern Trust golf tournament draws few fans

From Golf Digest | A golf tournament sponsored by Northern Trust last year drew a scant 30,000 spectators all week (estimated) to the Riviera Country Club, possibly due to a $50 gate charge — $20 more than the year before.

Fortune Brands ‘open’ to talking with Ackman

Some of Fortune Brands' products. (Candice C. Cusic/Chicago Tribune)

Fortune Brands touted the “value proposition” of remaining a diversified company Thursday but said it’s open to meeting with all its investors, including hedge fund manager William Ackman’s Pershing Square Capital Management, which has taken a 10.9 percent stake in the company.

“We’re open to constructive discussion with all our shareholders and that includes Pershing Square,” Chief Executive Bruce Carbonari said. “Our board is very engaged and very involved and along, along with management, at looking at how our business is structured.”

Added Craig Omtvedt, chief financial officer, “We’re pretty relaxed. We look forward to having a dialogue with Ackman and his team as much as we do anybody else.” Get the full story »