Diageo to Buy Turkey's Mey Icki for $2.1B

The world’s largest spirits maker, Diageo (NYSE:DEO), inked a deal on Monday to buy Turkish spirits group Mey Icki for $2.1 billion it an effort to tap into the emerging market.

The London-based maker of Guinness, Smirnoff vodka and Bailey’s said it will acquire the leading Turkish spirits maker from investment companies TPG Capital and Actera in a deal slated to close in the second-half of this year, pending regulatory approvals.

In a presentation to investors, Diageo said the acquisition transforms Diageo’s presence and participation in Turkey, bringing market leadership in the major local spirits categories Raki and Vodka. Raki is the most consumed alcoholic beverage in the country, and vodka in the fastest growing sector in the Turkish alcohol market, according to Diageo.

Turkey, with Europe’s third largest population, is also attractive given its rapid GDP growth, which was 8% in 2010.