Punch Taverns £403m Takeover By Heineken And Partner Agreed

PUnchHeineken NV and investment partner Patron Capital have agreed a £403 million deal to buy and break up Punch Taverns in a move that would make the Dutch brewer Britain’s third-largest pubs group.

The companies said yesterday taht Punch shareholders would receive 180 pence per share in cash, more than 40 percent above Punch’s closing price on Tuesday, a day before a potential deal was first reported.

Heineken will pay £305m to Vine to add 1,900 of Punch’s estate of 3,500 sites to its existing Star Pubs & Bars portfolio, which numbers 1,100.

Vine, controlled by Patron, will retain the remainder.

The offer from Vine has been recommended by the board of Punch and is also being supported by its biggest shareholders – Glenview Capital, Avenue Capital and Warwick Capital.

David Forde, managing director of Heineken UK, added: “Today’s announcement is a huge vote of confidence in the great British pub. Our proven track record of success demonstrates that well invested and well run pubs in the leased and tenanted sector can thrive. Today’s development is good news for pub-goers across the UK who will see the benefit of better pubs in their communities.
“We look forward to welcoming new licensees into Star Pubs & Bars, and to working with them to grow their businesses.”

Stephen Billingham, chairman of Punch, said: “The Punch board and management team have positioned Punch to drive long term value for shareholders and our recent performance has demonstrated the successful execution of this strategy, reflecting the hard work and quality of the whole Punch team. While the board did not solicit this offer for the company, we believe this is a good outcome for shareholders as the offer provides cash certainty at a significant premium.”