UK: Nichols sale "unlikely" as Barr cools interest
The sale of UK soft drinks group Nichols now appears unlikely, just-drinks understands.
A number of parties, including Irn-Bru maker AG Barr, are believed to be in talks with the Nichols family over a potential acquisition of the Vimto producer. However, an industry source has told just-drinks that AG Barr's interest seems to have cooled despite having conducted "early due diligence" on Nichols.
The source also said that a number of private equity firms remain interested in Nichols but that the Nichols family, which controls nearly 40% of the company, is happy to retain ownership.
UK-based Nichols saw profits jump almost 16% last year as its focus on soft drinks paid off. The company posted a 15.8% rise in pre-tax profits to just under GBP7m (US$13.5m). Revenues, meanwhile, inched up 1.6% to GBP52.3m during 2006.
The jump in earnings came from Nichols' move to focus on two areas - soft drinks and its dispense systems business.
AG Barr has posted a slight lift in operating profit for the six months to the end of July, despite the poor summer weather in the UK....
UK soft drinks company Nichols has pulled out of its offer period and is no longer for sale....
Nichols has posted a lift in sales for its first half, despite "extremely difficult" trading conditions....
AG Barr has signed a three-year deal with The Scottish Football League, making its Irn-Bru brand the official sponsor....
AG Barr is launching a larger can size for its Irn-Bru 32 energy drink....
AG Barr has released an upbeat trading update for the first three months of its financial year....
Coca-Cola GB has not been drawn on reports that it is in talks with Highland Spring, despite recent press speculation....
Irn Bru is launching an advertising campaign involving Goths holidaying in Blackpool to a soundtrack by The Undertones....
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