Irn-bru manufacturer profits dented as aborted merger costs AG Barr £4.9m

With Britvic walking away from merger talks with fellow soft-drinks manufacturer in July, the Scottish firm AG Barr has had to deal with legal costs of some £4.9m relating to the failed deal (release).

During the year to 26 January 2013, A.G. BARR p.l.c. and Britvic plc worked together on a proposed all-share merger which was subsequently referred to the Competition Commission and following clearance, finally aborted. Professional, legal fees and certain employee related costs incurred in relation to the proposed merger and related Competition Commission enquiry have been treated as exceptional for the periods presented.

Exceptional charges amounting to £3.4m were incurred in the period relating to three categories of expenditure. During the year ended January 2013, A. G. BARR p.l.c. and Britvic plc worked together on a proposed all-share merger which was referred to the Competition Commission and subsequently aborted following clearance. Professional and legal costs incurred in the 6 months to July 2013 in relation to the merger and consequent Competition Enquiry which together amount to £2.0m, have been treated as exceptional costs. The cumulative costs associated with the merger, which have been recognised in this and prior periods amount to £4.9m.

The producer of the popular Irn-Bru beverage saw profits slip from £14.779m to £13.241m in the six months ended 28 July.

Commenting on the results, Roger White, chief executive said:

We have made good progress across all fronts in the year to date. We successfully navigated the challenging market conditions in the early part of 2013 and have accelerated our growth in the second quarter.