Fuller’s buys cider maker for £3.8m


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The Independent Online

Fuller, Smith & Turner is looking to expand cider maker Cornish Orchards after buying the business for £3.8m.

The London Pride brewer unveiled the deal as it hailed the improved weather for helping to drive sales over the spring. Underlying sales at its managed pubs and hotels rose  7 per cent over the nine weeks to 1 June, against just 2 per cent in the year to March.

Michael Turner, Fuller’s chairman, said: “Although the weather has not been brilliant in the first nine weeks, it has been a big improvement on last year.”

Fuller’s, which has 386 pubs and hotels, grew its profits by 5 per cent to £31.7m in its last financial year.

The group has already started building a pub, called London’s Pride, that will open in Heathrow’s Terminal 2 next year.

It plans to expand the craft cider and apple juice maker Cornish Orchards, which is based in Dunloe, Cornwall, on the Duchy of Cornwall estates.

Fuller’s increased its final dividend by 10 per cent to 8.35p a share.