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Diageo: rumours of takeover bid
Published:  08 June, 2015

There are unconfirmed rumours that a private equity firm is about to bid for Diageo, the world’s largest premium drinks company.

3G Capital, owned by Brazilian entrepreneur, Jorge Paulo Lemann, is rumoured to have partnered with Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway. The two opportunists are said to have cooperated in deals involving Burger King, Heinz and Kraft Foods.

Diageo chief executive Ivan Menezes is perceived as under pressure following poor to indifferent recent results plus the troubled take over of the giant Indian drinks group, United Spirits, which produces much of the sub continent’s whisky.

In April Diageo reported net sales were down 0.7% in the quarter, with volume down 1.7% in the nine month period to March 31, and 0.8% in the quarter.

Acquisitions, principally United Spirits, contributed £700 million partially offset by an adverse impact of currency movements of £298 million and a reduction of £28 million due to disposals, said the company in April.