Britvic A.G.Barr merger in question pending Competition Commission probe

The proposed merger of soft drinks manufacturers Britvic and A.G.Barr lost some of its fizz after the companies announced that the Competition Commission had opened an investigation.

The proposed merger of soft drinks manufacturers Britvic and A.G.Barr lost some of its fizz after the companies announced that the Competition Commission had opened an investigation.

The groups reported that the Office of Fair Trading had referred the merger to the Competition Commission due to concerns that a tie-up could reduce competition between certain brands of A.G. Barr and Britvic.

A statement issued by Britvic reported that both parties believed that "the merger will not result in a substantial lessening of competition and that they will be able to demonstrate this to the Competition Commission".

However, the probe represents a major set-back for the drinks makers, which previously announced that the effective date of the merger would be February 26th.

The investigation could take six months and after that both companies said there was no longer a guarantee the tie-up would even go ahead.

A statement from Britvic read: "The Competition Commission's investigation is expected to take approximately six months. If clearance is received from the Competition Commission on terms satisfactory to both A.G. Barr and Britvic, the boards of A.G. Barr and Britvic will each reconsider, at that time, the terms of a possible merger between A.G. Barr and Britvic.

"There can be no certainty or assurance that, following such clearance, any such merger would be forthcoming or that any offer will be made by either A.G. Barr or Britvic".

Britvic's brands include Robinsons, Fruit Shoot, R Whites and Tabngo. A.G.Barr's brands include Irn Bru, Tizer and Rubicon.

Britvic's share price was down 8.26% to 385.30p at 11:26 on Thursday.

MF

Recommended

Best junior stocks and shares ISA platforms
Isas

Best junior stocks and shares ISA platforms

A junior stocks and shares ISA is a great way to save for your child tax-efficiently. But it can be confusing deciding which investment platform to ch…
25 Nov 2022
Share tips of the week – 25 November
Share tips

Share tips of the week – 25 November

MoneyWeek’s comprehensive guide to the best of this week’s share tips from the rest of the UK's financial pages.
25 Nov 2022
Investing in a recession: 5 moves investors should make now
Investment strategy

Investing in a recession: 5 moves investors should make now

As we enter a recession, here’s what investors should do with their portfolios.
23 Nov 2022
It’s time to focus on Fuller’s
Share tips

It’s time to focus on Fuller’s

The pub sector has had a torrid two years, but this group is resilient and poised to prosper. We take a closer look at Fuller’s.
21 Nov 2022

Most Popular

Wood-burning stove vs central heating ‒ which is cheapest?
Personal finance

Wood-burning stove vs central heating ‒ which is cheapest?

Demand for wood-burning stoves has surged as households try to reduce their heating costs this winter. But how does a wood burner compare with central…
21 Nov 2022
Fan heater vs oil heater – which is cheaper?
Personal finance

Fan heater vs oil heater – which is cheaper?

Sales of portable heaters have soared, as households look to cut their energy costs. But which is better: a fan heater or an oil heater? We put them t…
21 Nov 2022
Best savings accounts – November 2022
Savings

Best savings accounts – November 2022

Interest rates on cash savings are making a comeback. We look at the best savings accounts on the market now
28 Nov 2022