Allied gets all clear for Punch deal

ALLIED DOMECQ'S pounds 2.75bn deal to sell its 3,600-strong estate of pubs and restaurants to Punch Taverns was given the legal all-clear today, despite objections from disappointed rival bidder Whitbread.

A High Court judge sanctioned an Allied restructuring scheme giving effect to the deal, due for completion in September. Mr Justice Blackburne rejected arguments that the scheme, originally drawn up to facilitate a merger of the Allied estate with Whitbread, could not now be used for the rival cash sale to Punch.

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