Belfast Telegraph

Magners owner C&C in swoop for Admiral Taverns pub chain

Irish drinks firm C&C, which is behind Magners cider, has inked a deal to acquire pub chain Admiral Taverns alongside Proprium Capital Partners in a £220 million deal.

As part of the transaction, C&C will take 47% of Chester-based Admiral while Proprium, a property firm, will take a slightly higher stake.

The remainder will be held by Admiral's management team, led by chief executive Kevin Georgel.

The deal contains both debt and equity and C&C is pumping £37 million in for its holding.

Admiral, which is being sold by hedge fund Cerberus, operates 845 pubs in Britain and raked in £25.2 million in earnings last year.

The deal will give C&C, which also owns Tennents lager, a direct route to market "without taking significant financial and operational risk", its boss Stephen Glancey said.

He added: "This is an attractive opportunity to create a new long term investment in the important on-trade channel, without taking significant financial and operational risk.

"The investment will provide our brands with improved distribution in some of the best community pubs across the UK, with an opportunity to enhance on-trade penetration further over time."

The acquisition is the latest move by a drinks firm to seize control of a pubs group.

In December, Heineken snapped up Punch Taverns alongside private equity firm Patron Capital in a £403 million deal.

Mr Georgel said: " Our strategy remains unapologetically consistent and I look forward to working with the support of our new investors to continue to build on the significant progress the business has made over the last five years and take advantage of the opportunities within our markets, as and when they arise."

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