Diageo is not looking to acquire Britvic, despite recent press reports, just-drinks understands.

A report on the Daily Mail website today (9 July) claimed that Diageo may be considering a takeover bid for UK-based Britvic, leading shares in the soft drinks company to rise markedly this morning.

But a source close to the situation has told just-drinks that Diageo is not looking to buy Britvic, which holds the exclusive UK licence for PepsiCo's beverage portfolio. "Such speculation rears its head only because Diageo is in a position to make purchases," the source said. "That doesn't mean that Britvic would be the kind of acquisition for Diageo."

Speculation linking Diageo to making an acquisition move raised its head earlier this year when reports linked the company to Brown-Forman. Like then, a Diageo spokesperson declined to comment on today's reports when contacted by just-drinks.

In May, Britvic's largest shareholder, private equity firm Permira, offloaded its 14% holding in the company after its investment in Britvic became a "passive stake". Two year ago, Permira had been mooted as looking to buy Britvic.