Bass buys Aussie hotels

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The Independent Online
Bass, the brewing to retail giant, has acquired four hotels in Australia as part of its planned expansion into the Far East and Pacific Rim hotels market following the sales of its Gala bingo clubs, Coral betting shops and tenanted pubs chain. These sales have realised more than pounds 1.2bn for the company, although the board has promised to return pounds 850m to shareholders through a capital repayment exercise.

However, analysts still believe Bass has the financial firepower to spend up to pounds 2bn without putting undue strain on the balance sheet. City sources reckon Bass is still eyeing a big hotels deal.