Tuesday, 1 April 2008
And so it ends-not with a bang, but a whimper. Yesterday S&N shareholders voted overwhelmingly to accept a £7.8 billion bid from Heineken and Carlsberg. Well, they would, wouldn’t they? Heineken now control all those brands we all love so much: Fosters, John Smiths and Strongbow. Ha, as far as I’m concerned, they are welcome to them. I’ll shed no tears for S&N, just as I shed none for Whitbread when that disappeared up its own rear. The thing that really annoyed me was the comments of S&N chairman Sir Paddy Pratswick-sorry, Sir Brian Stewart. After seeing 259 years (not all of them bad), of brewing come to an end, he said “while there is sadness at the passing of two centuries of brewing history, the prevalent emotion today is pride.” Eh? Pride in what? Pride in overseeing S&N’s dismantlement and getting a fat payout, I presume. Pass the sick bucket, please.