Canandaigua brands bids for U.K.'s Matthew Clark

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FAIRPORT, N.Y. -- U.S.-based beer, wine and spirits importer Canandaigua Brands has made a cash offer for the outstanding ordinary shares of U.K. drinks group Matthew Clark plc. Matthew Clark's board of directors has recommended shareholders accept the offer of around $360 million.

Matthew Clark's main brands include Blackthorn and Diamond White ciders, Stowells of Chelsea wines and Strathmore sparkling water.

Richard Sands, CEO of Canandaigua Brands, says the acquisition fits with the company's growth strategy, which includes buying businesses that expand its geographic presence outside the U.S. A takeover of Matthew Clark "establishes a platform from which further strategic acquisitions can be made," he adds.

The U.K. is one of the most important markets in the world for alcoholic drinks. Canandaigua Brands claims to be the second largest marketer of imported beer, the second biggest wine producer and marketer and the fourth largest spirits provider in the U.S.

Copyright November 1998, Crain Communications Inc.

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