‘HUNDREDS’ OF PUBS TO CLOSE AFTER SHOCK SALE
HUNDREDS of boozers could be forced to call last orders after the shock Hong Kong takeover of a pub chain.
Greene King, which operates 2,730 pubs, restaurants and hotels across the UK, has been snapped up by property developer CK Asset Holdings in a deal valued at around £4.6billion.
And analysts fear the firm may now cash in on their new portfolio by turning the properties into flats and supermarkets.
Neil Wilson, inset, chief market analyst at Markets, said the “whopping premium implies CKA sees significant value in the property portfolio”.
And he added: “Greene King recently carried out a revaluation of its property estate that indicated a market value of £4.5bn against the £3.5bn book value.
“In the last financial year the company disposed of 41 trading pubs in Pub Company, 69 trading pubs in Pub Partners and six closed pubs – 116 in all. “With CKA taking it private I would not be surprised to see this accelerate.” Directors at Greene King voted “unanimously to recommend” shareholders back the offer. The company was founded in Bury St Edmunds in 1799.
The deal comes seven months after Brit firm Fuller’s sold its brewing arm to a Japanese company.
BITTER END: Greene King