The UK pub group and brewer Greene King is to acquire 432 pubs from Laurel for £654m (US$1.2 billion). The deal will see Greene King increase its pub estate by a quarter, to over 2,100 pubs.

The acquisition will also "significantly" boost earnings in the first full-year of ownership, following an estimated £6m in cost savings, but before goodwill amortisation, the brewer of Abbott Ale said.

Greene King said the transaction, together with a part refinancing of its existing debt, would be met through a new £1.2 billion debt facility with Lloyds Bank.