WIC doubles stake in brewery

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The Independent Online
THE WHITBREAD Investment Company has doubled its stake in Fuller Smith & Turner, a local brewery in west London, to 8.35 per cent, writes Topaz Amoore.

By increasing its holding, WIC has underlined its commitment to investing in regional breweries.

WIC, an investment trust 49.9 per cent owned by Whitbread, is having to reduce its stakes in individual breweries to below 15 per cent to comply with the conditions of the Government's Beer Orders.

Hugh Whitbread, WIC's investment manager, said the company would continue to invest in regional breweries as long as they remained a good investment for its shareholders.

He said the purchase was partially funded by proceeds from the sale of WIC's 28.5 per cent stake in Morland, the Oxfordshire brewer, to Greene King. That sale triggered Greene King's abortive hostile takeover bid for Morland.