Greenalls to bid pounds 500m for Boddington

JOHN WILLCOCK

and JOHN SHEPHERD

Greenalls Group is poised to buy rival pub business Boddington for around pounds 500m as consolidation in the overcrowded pubs market gathers pace.

Earlier in the day Boddington admitted it had received an approach which might lead to a recommended offer. Industry sources said that Greenalls, the acquisitive group headed by Peter Greenall, will offer Boddington's shareholders one share worth 450p for every two they own, or a mixture of shares and cash. Yesterday morning the market sensed a bid was in the air, with many speculating it would be the brewer Whitbread, whose shares ended 7p down at 629p.

Boddington's shares soared 86p to 358p, well above the year's high of 295p. Some analysts said Greenalls would have to offer the equivalent of at least 400p a share to secure agreement from Boddington.

The Manchester company owns 450 pubs and sold the Boddington's beer brand - "the cream of Manchester" - to Whitbread seven years ago. The company has also developed a series of leisure villages, owns the drinks wholesalers chain Liquid Assets, and runs several nursing homes.

Boddington was forced into making a formal announcement as its share price soared amid heavy dealings for what is a tightly-held stock. It said any bid would be substantially above the markert price.

Dealers reported heavy interest in the stock from investors in Boddington's home area in the North West, where the highly acquisitive Greenalls Group is also based.

"There has been some pretty inspirational buying of Boddington's shares the past few days," one senior dealer said yesterday. "The thinking is that the buying may be more than just inspirational," he added. More than 3 million Boddington shares were traded on Tuesday, compared with just 34,953 on Monday and a 200-day average volume of 300,901. Another 2.7 million were traded yesterday.

The Greenall family sold out of Greenalls several years ago, but Peter Greenall stays at the helm. Like Boddington it has spearheaded the development of family pubs, with the "Jungle Bungles" chain. It also owns Cellar 5 off-licences, drinks wholesalers and De Vere hotels

The City still expects thousands of pubs to close, and further mergers are expected. Regent Inns recently bid for Newt & Cucumber pubs but was trumped by Morland, the Abingdon brewer. There was speculation yesterday about a number of possible deals: Vaux, the brewer and Swallow Hotels owner based in Sunderland, may be targeted by Wolverhampton & Dudley Breweries. Analysts also expect that if Whitbread cannot buy Allied Domecq out of Carlsberg-Tetley then it might go for Greene King's brewing arm instead.

Carlsberg-Tetley is to close its Warrington brewery by October 1996 with the loss of 240 jobs; 150 will go at Burton on Trent and another 110 will go in sales and administration.

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Voices
Homeless Veterans charity auction: Cook with Angela Hartnett and Neil Borthwick at Merchants Tavern
charity appealTime is running out to secure your favourite lot as our auction closes at 2pm tomorrow
Arts and Entertainment
J Jefferson Farjeon at home in 1953
booksBooksellers say readers are turning away from modern thrillers and back to golden age of crime writing
Sport
Amir Khan is engaged in a broader battle than attempting to win a fight with Floyd Mayweather
boxing Exclusive: Amir Khan reveals plans to travel to Pakistan
News
Stacey Dooley was the only woman to be nominated in last month’s Grierson awards
mediaClare Balding and Davina McCall among those overlooked for Grierson awards
PROMOTED VIDEO
Voices
Joseph Kynaston Reeves arguing with Russell Brand outside the RBS’s London offices on Friday
voicesDJ Taylor: The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a worker's rant to Russell Brand
News
Twitchers see things differently, depending on their gender
scienceNew study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Caroline Flack became the tenth winner of Strictly Come Dancing
tvReview: 'Absolutely phenomenal' Xtra Factor presenter wins Strictly Come Dancing final
Life and Style
A still from the 1939 film version of Margaret Mitchell's 'Gone with the Wind'
life
News
Xander van der Burgt, at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
scienceA Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
film
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Carlton Senior Appointments: Private Banking Manager - Intl Bank - Los Angeles

$200 - $350 per annum: Carlton Senior Appointments: Managing Producer – Office...

Carlton Senior Appointments: San Fran - Investment Advisor – Ind Advisory Firm

$125 - $225 per annum: Carlton Senior Appointments: San Fran - Investment Advi...

Sheridan Maine: Commercial Finance Manager

Up to £70,000 per annum + benefits: Sheridan Maine: Are you a qualified accoun...

Sheridan Maine: Regulatory Reporting Accountant

Up to £65,000 per annum + benefits: Sheridan Maine: Are you a qualified accoun...

Day In a Page

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick