BP sells Globol to Jeyes for pounds 18m

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The Independent Online
BRITISH Petroleum, the beleaguered oil giant, has sold Globol, a German household cleaning products company, to Jeyes Group, for pounds 18m cash.

The move is the first notable disposal by BP from its nutrition division, which the group downgraded to non-core status a year ago. The change in status was widely expected to result in the sale of large parts of the division to reduce the group's pounds 8bn debts.

The group has raised about dollars 1bn ( pounds 520m) annually from asset sales over the last few years and is planning to exceed significantly that target this year. It has so far raised about dollars 800m.

Globol, which manufactures air fresheners, toilet cleaners and domestic insecticides, has seen a fall in operating profits from pounds 2.6m in 1989 to pounds 1.3m last year.

However, Jeyes believes the profit margins can be improved in the next two years by cutting costs and using Jeyes' distribution network. The purchase will also add products to its lines.

Jeyes, a UK toiletries company quoted on the USM, is also assuming Globol's pounds 1m debts. Jeyes is financing the deal via a three- for-seven rights issue at 385p a share, to raise pounds 21.7m.

Jeyes said that its UK business was continuing to grow strongly and is forecasting a 19 per cent increase in this year's interim dividend to 3.1p. It also plans to move up to the official list.

Jeyes shares eased 3p to 470p while BP fell 1.5p to 209.5p.