OFT won't refer Punch Taverns to Competition Committee

05 May 2006 by
OFT won't refer Punch Taverns to Competition Committee

Punch Taverns has escaped action from the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) over its takeover of managed pub group Spirit.

In a statement the OFT said that, on the information currently available to it, it would not be referring Punch to the Competition Commission.

Punch bought Spirit for £2.7b last year, although the deal was not completed until January 2006.

At the time the deal gave Punch 9,500 pubs, although it has since disposed of a few hundred to head off competition fears.

It has plans to convert at least 750 Spirit pubs and is carrying out a review of the remaining 1,000 plus units.

The pub giant is likely to sell off some of the larger pub sites to managed pub rivals such as Mitchells & Butlers or Wolverhampton & Dudley Breweries.

By Chris Druce

OFT to look at Punch Taverns deal

Karen Jones leaves Spirit group

Punch sells 200 pubs to Petchy

Punch denies quick sell off of Spirit pubs

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