Friday 15 November 2019

Britvic down as merger falls flat

Britvic not so keen on merger
Britvic not so keen on merger

Peter Flanagan

SHARES in soft drinks-maker Britvic slid after a proposed merger with a Scottish firm finally collapsed.

AG Barr, the maker of Irn Bru, said Britvic had rejected an offer from them two days after the UK Competition Commission had cleared the two companies to merge.

Britvic, which employs more than 500 staff in Dublin and Thurles, had first mooted a merger with AG Barr nearly a year ago, but regulators blocked the move pending an investigation.

The authorities finally cleared the deal on Tuesday, but by then Britvic had restructured significantly, laying off about 14pc of its staff and shifting a number of operations to Ireland.

Britvic chairman Gerald Corbett had reiterated on Tuesday that his company was in a "much different place" today than when the deal was originally proffered.

In a statement, AG Barr confirmed it had made a "revised proposal" to Britvic.

Shares in Britvic fell sharply yesterday, but recovered marginally to end the day down 1.9pc at 512 pence.

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