The owners of Punch Pubs and Co, one of the UK’s largest pub operators, are mulling a sale of the firm after receiving a flurry of approaches despite ongoing Covid-19 headwinds.
Fortress Investment Group, the US investor owned by Japan’s SoftBank, is in talks to buy Punch for a price reportedly in the region of £1bn.
The news was first reported by Sky News.
City sources said today the talks were “serious” but stressed they were far from nailed on to result in a deal.
Rival firms are also understood to have approached Punch, which is controlled by Patron Capital Partners, and it was unclear whether Fortress had formal exclusivity in its negotiations.
Punch owns around 1,300 pubs in the UK.