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C&C Group buys Gaymers cider for £45m

From The Publican

By Hamish Champ , 30-Nov-2009

Magners cider producer C&C Group has bought rival manufacturer Gaymer Cider Company from Constellation Brands for £45m.

 

Gaymer's, which employs around 250 people, produces a number of cider brands including Blackthorn, Olde English and Gaymers.

 

C&C said it was funding the deal via a new bank facility of £60m.

 

The acquisition, which is expected to complete by mid-January, would result in savings of £3m by the end of the 2013 financial year, C&C said.

 

The Gaymer's deal is the latest in a list of acquisitions C&C has undertaken following the arrival of ex-Scottish & Newcastle boss John Dunsmore.

 

In August C&C bought the Tennent's lager brand from ABInBev for £180m.

 

The group said the Gaymer's acquisition would strengthen its UK cider business and consolidate its position in the cider market.

 

Meanwhile it said it was "on track" to deliver full year operating profits "in line with stated guidance".

 

Speaking about the sale Rob Sands, president and chief executive officer, Constellation Brands, said in a statement: "The Gaymer cider business has been a valued and respected part of Constellation's European operations for many years.

 

"However, as the company's strategy has evolved to focus on premium higher-growth, higher-margin wine, beer and spirits brands, it made good strategic sense to sell the cider business."

 

Constellation said it expects proceeds from the sale will be used to reduce debt.

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