Fortune Brands, Inc., a leading consumer brands company, today announced that its Board of Directors has approved a new share repurchase authorization for the company. The authorization allows the discretionary purchase of up to five million shares. In the event the five million share buyback is completed, the Board authorized the company’s Executive Committee to approve the repurchase of an additional five million shares.

In 2000, Fortune Brands completed its 10 million share repurchase authorization, reducing shares outstanding by more than 6%. Combined with 11 million shares bought back in 1999, the company has reduced shares outstanding by more than 12% in the past two years.

Share repurchases may be effected from time to time in the open market or through private transactions, subject to market conditions.

Fortune Brands, Inc. is a consumer products company with annual sales exceeding $5.8 billion. Its operating companies have premier brands and leading market positions in home and hardware products, office products, golf equipment and spirits and wine. Home and hardware brands include Moen faucets, Aristokraft and Schrock cabinets, Master locks and Waterloo tool storage sold by units of MasterBrand Industries, Inc. Office brands include Day-Timer, Swingline, Kensington and Wilson Jones sold by units of ACCO World Corporation. Acushnet Company’s golf brands include Titleist, Cobra and FootJoy. Major spirits and wine brands sold by units of Jim Beam Brands Worldwide, Inc. include Jim Beam and Knob Creek bourbons, DeKuyper cordials, Whyte & Mackay Scotch and Geyser Peak and Canyon Road wines. Fortune Brands, headquartered in Lincolnshire, Illinois, is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol FO and is included in the S&P 500 Index.