Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education



Front Page

World

UK

UK Politics

Business

Sci/Tech

Health

Education

Sport

Entertainment

Talking Point

In Depth

On Air

Archive
Feedback
Low Graphics
Help

Friday, August 27, 1999 Published at 13:44 GMT 14:44 UK


Business: The Company File

Indian tea firm looks to bag Tetley

The Tetley Tea Folk could swap Yorkshire for India

Tetley, the world's second largest tea company, is the target of a buy-out by an Indian tea producer.

Tata Tea, based in Calcutta, said in its annual report that it was "seriously examining" the purchase of Tetley.

The firm's board has approved submission of a bid for Tetley.

Last year, Tetley withdrew plans to float on the London Stock Exchange when management became concerned about the price it would fetch.

The move sparked rumours that it was expecting a future takeover bid.

Tetley saw its sales rocket when it produced first the round, and then the pyramid tea bag.

It is the market leader in the UK and Canada, with total sales of 300m and profits of 40m.

Bidding war

Tata may have to enter a bidding war with US company Sara Lee, which has also expressed an interest in the company.

Tetley was sold by drinks giant Allied Domecq for 190m to its management in 1995.

It is now estimated to be worth between 270m and 300m.

The company is the world's second biggest producer of tea bags and has been closely involved with Tata.

Joint venture

The two firms set up the Tata Tetley joint venture in Cochin, India, in 1992, to produce tea bags for the eastern European and Middle Eastern markets.

A spokeswoman for Tetley said: "We do receive offers from time to time and, as always, we continue to review them in the light of the business."

Tata Tea said its finance director would comment on the move next week.

Tata Tea is part of the giant Tata conglomerate which has interests in steel production, transport, hotels and computer software.

Tata Tea has estates in four states West Bengal, Assam, Kerala and Tamil Nadu and owns close to 60 tea estates covering 30,000 hectares of cultivated land.

Brooke Bond-Lipton, a subsidiary of food giant Unilever, is the world's largest tea company, with substantial interests in India through Hindustan Lever.



Advanced options | Search tips




Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage |


The Company File Contents

Internet Links


Tata Tetley

Tata Tea


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.




In this section

Microsoft trial mediator welcomed

Vodafone takeover battle heats up

Christmas turkey strike vote

NatWest bid timetable frozen

France faces EU action over electricity

Pace enters US cable heartland

Mannesmann fights back

Storehouse splits up Mothercare and Bhs

The rapid rise of Vodafone

The hidden shopping bills

Europe's top net stock

Safeway faces cash demand probe

Mitchell intervenes to help shipyard

New factory creates 500 jobs

Drugs company announces 300 jobs

BT speeds internet access

ICL creates 1,000 UK jobs

National Power splits in two

NTT to slash workforce

Scoot links up with Vivendi

New freedom for Post Office

Insolvent firms to get breathing space

Airtours profits jump 12%

Freeserve shares surge

LVMH buys UK auction house

Rover - a car firm's troubles