Carlsberg raises cash for possible brewery buy

27 June, 2007

Carlsberg could raise £7 billion towards a brewery acquisition, but has no concrete plans to buy Scottish & Newcastle, a spokesman has told OLN.

Danish authorities have approved a bid by the Carlsberg Foundation, which owns 51 per cent of Carlsberg’s shares, to change its charter so it can double its share capital and raise £5 billion. And it can borrow a further £2 billion.

“We have absolutely no concrete plans but you always have to prepare yourself,” said media relations director Jens Peter Skaarup. “If we suddenly should get an offer it would be too late to go to the Danish authories and ask them for permission to change the Foundation’s charter, so we have to do that in due time.”

In the UK both Carlsberg and S&N have dismissed the takeover talks as speculation, but S&N’s share price has climbed amid the rumours.

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I would like to think my outlook on things is generally optimistic. Perhaps that’s a natural consequence of working with something designed to give pleasure. But recently it has become increasingly difficult to ignore a creeping sense of negativity pervading the British wine trade.

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