Sale of 42 pubs would ‘remedy’ concerns over Ei-Stonegate deal

By Emily Hawkins contact

- Last updated on GMT

Proposed solution: the CMA claims putting some pubs up for sale would alleviate concerns about competition
Proposed solution: the CMA claims putting some pubs up for sale would alleviate concerns about competition

Related tags: Ei Group, Stonegate

The Competition and Markets Authority’s (CMA) has suggested Ei Group and Stonegate should put 42 pubs on the market ahead of their proposed merger.

The watchdog made the recommendation after it previously identified “local concerns” about a monopoly, with fears that some areas could experience raised prices and lower quality products.

Stonegate intends to acquire Ei Group for £1.27bn, a move that would make the former the largest pub company in the country with around 5,000 sites.

In a notice issued today (9 January), it said the sale of 42 pubs “might be acceptable as a suitable remedy” to local competition concerns.  

It assessed whether each of the pubs proposed by the companies were “saleable” and “likely to continue in operation after the divestment” and concluded they were.

The watchdog said it had seen evidence that there are “several potential suitable purchasers who have expressed an interest” in acquiring the pubs.

The CMA said previously it would clear the acquisition if local concerns in 51 areas were overcome as the takeover did not raise national competition concerns.

It said it had found “a limited number of local areas where significant concentration gives rise to significant competition concerns”, ranging from High Wycombe to Caerphilly.

Here is the list of pubs in full:

Old Ford, Ash Vale 

Anchor, Benfleet 

New Inn, Erdington 

Red Lion, Erdington

Bay Horse, Fulford 

Plough, Fulford

Rylston, Fulham

Barca, Gosforth 

Blacksmith's Arms, Gosforth

Home Bar & Kitchen, Ickenham 

Hyde Arms, Edmonton 

Railway Tavern, Edmonton 

Fishermans Rest, Bedwas 

White Hart, Tongham 

Clarence, Fulham 

Colton Arms West Kensington 

Cumberland Arms, Hammersmith

Elm, Fulham 

Old Oak, West Kensington 

Bar Italia, Uxbridge

Beehive Hotel, Birkenhead 

Beeswing Ale, House York 

Caerphilly Cwtch, Caerphilly 

Garden Farm, Chester-Le-Street 

Imperial Hotel, Birkenhead 

Masons Arms, Caerphilly

Old Packet House, Altrincham 

Prenton Park, Birkenhead

Station Inn, Caerphilly 

Swan, Wickford

Slug & Lettuce, Beckenham

Antelope, High Wycombe

Three Tuns, High Wycombe 

Chiltern Taps, High Wycombe

Bull, Barming

Occasional Half, Palmers Green

Bird in Hand, Forest Hill

Gatehouse, Tonbridge

Goose, Fulham

The Red Back, Fulham

Dam Inn, Wakefield

Elmbridge Arms, Weybridge 

Related topics: Ei Group

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