10 Jul 2000

SFI Offers To Acquire Slug and Lettuce for £31.6 million

Simmons & Simmons advised SFI Group plc, the highly rated managed pubs group, on its recommended securities exchange offer for The Slug and Lettuce Group plc, which was announced on 28 June 2000. The acquisition offer for Slug and Lettuce, which is valued at approximately £31.6 million, is to be made by HSBC Investment Bank on behalf of SFI.

Simmons & Simmons also advised SFI in October 1999 on its acquisition of the Latin American Themed Bars of Capital Radio. The firm was appointed to act for SFI for the first time on its proposed merger with Regents Inns plc in March 1999.

The acquisition of Slug and Lettuce adds a third core brand to SFI’s licensed retail business, complementing its current Litten Tree and Bar Med formats.

Slug and Lettuce is a multiple licensed pub retailer and currently operates 33 outlets under the Slug and Lettuce brand.

The Simmons & Simmons team was led by Corporate Finance partner Martin Saywell.

Martin Saywell commented:

"We are delighted to have assisted SFI to take another step in the consolidation of the sector."

These two latest deals for SFI add to Simmons & Simmons increasing portfolio in the drinks and leisure sector. The firm also recently acted for Interbrew SA on its acquisition of the Whitbread Beer Company for £400 million, and of the Bass Brewers Business for £2.3 billion.

Travers Smith Braithwaite acted on behalf of Slug and Lettuce.

Notes for editors:

Simmons & Simmons is worldclass law firm with offices in London, Paris, Brussels, Düsseldorf, Lisbon, Milan, Rome, Madrid, Abu Dhabi, Hong Kong, Shanghai and New York with over 1,400 staff worldwide. For further information on Simmons & Simmons please visit our website at www.simmons-simmons.com.

2. The Corporate Department at Simmons & Simmons comprises over 220 legal staff (115 in London), including 47 partners (27 in London). It advises on the whole range of corporate finance activity, and mergers and acquisitions as well as other corporate law matters for listed and unlisted companies, in the United Kingdom and overseas.

3. The Biotechnology Practice Group at Simmons & Simmons is multi-disciplinary and provides a full range of services relating to biotechnology. The Group includes members of the firm?s Intellectual Property and Corporate Departments, as well as Employment, Tax, EU/Competition and Environmental lawyers. The Group has several bioscience qualified lawyers and others who have worked in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. It has had a long-standing involvement in the biotechnology sector and has worked on a number of significant and high profile matters.

4. For further information, please contact:
Martin Saywell, partner, Corporate
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