Cadbury Schweppes has outlined plans to split its shares following the proposed demerger of its US soft drinks business, which is due to complete in May.

The UK-based company said yesterday (19 March) that, in exchange for every 100 existing Cadbury Schweppes shares, shareholders will receive 64 ordinary shares in Cadbury plc and 12 shares of common stock in the demerged Dr Pepper Snapple Group.

A general meeting on 11 April will look to gain shareholder approval for the demerger, which would subsequently go through on 7 May, when DPSG shares would begin their listing on the New York Stock Exchange.

DPSG is forecast to have net debt of approximately US$3.8bn, representing a multiple of net debt to 2007 EBITDA of around 3.1 times. DPSG will not initially pay a dividend, Cadbury Schweppes noted.

Earlier this month, a report from banking group Bear Stearns had suggested that the demerger may face a delay. "Following a further deterioration in the debt markets, we believe there is now at least a 50/50 risk that Cadbury Schweppes might postpone the separation of its US beverages business," an analyst at the company wrote.