The US private-equity firm Carlyle Group is thought to be preparing a bid for the European beverage division of Cadbury Schweppes.

According to a report in the UK's Financial Times, Carlyle has lined up Nish Kankiwala, formerly of Pepsico Inc, to lead its bid.

Cadbury was reported earlier this month to have hired investment bank Goldman Sachs to find a buyer for the unit.

Estimates suggest a sale of the European unit will fetch GBP1BN.