UK firms have had mixed fortunes in the United States

CADBURY SCHWEPPES
Bought Dr Pepper/Seven Up in 1995. Then in 2000 bought the Snapple Group. Combined the two, but had to demerge its US fizzy drinks business by May 2008, so spun off Dr Pepper Snapple Group in a listing on the New York Stock Exchange.

MARKS & SPENCER
Bought the 155-store male outfitter Brooks Brothers (US) for $750m in 1988, only to sell it to Retail Brand Alliance of Connecticut for $250m in 2001.

MIDLAND BANK
Bought a stake in Crocker National of California (US) in 1974, but was forced to take full ownership in 1985 and then sold it to Wells Fargo in 1986.

BAE SYSTEMS
Since the merger of Marconi and British Aerospace in 1999, has pursued an aggressive US expansion plan. Chairman Dick Olver ruled out any further European deals in 2004.

BARCLAYS
Established a US affiliate, Barclays Bank of California in San Francisco, in 1965, and took over American Credit Corporation in 1980. Bought the investment banking and trading divisions of Lehman Brothers in 2008. Since 2007 has sponsored the Barclays Center – home to the Brooklyn Nets basketball team.

WPP
Bought the Ogilvy Group, including historic US advertising agency Ogilvy & Mather for $864m. The US operations are now its largest single source of revenue.