Punch Taverns completes Spirit purchase

06 January 2006 by
Punch Taverns completes Spirit purchase

Punch Taverns has completed its £2.7b acquisition of the Spirit Group.

The deal, announced 1 December and given shareholder approval on 30 December 2005, is likely to be the pub industry's biggest for some time to come.

Punch has plans to convert 750 Spirit pubs to tenancies or leases over the next two years.

It is also conducting a year-long review of the remaining 1,000-plus sites it has bough, as well its future head-office requirements.

The company is widely expected to sell of many of the larger pubs it has purchased, which are more suitable to run under the pub management model.

Although Punch has not ruled out keeping on a managed division, it is expected several package deals will be struck with managed pub companies such as Mitchells & Butlers and Wolverhampton & Dudley Breweries.

By Chris Druce

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