Suntory in race to buy British soft drink brands Lucozade, Ribena from GSK
Suntory Holdings, a Japan-based beverage company, plans to acquire two British soft drink brands - Lucozade and Ribena – for over £1bn from UK-based pharmaceuticals giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK).
Lucozade sports drink range includes Lucozade Energy, Lucozade Revive, Lucozade Sport and Lucozade Sport Lite.
Ribena is a fruit drink brand available in different flavors including apple, orange, raspberry and pomegranate.
Ribena Really Light is the low-calorie version of Ribena with no added sugar. The Ribena Plus range includes Ribena Plus with vitamin A and vitamin C to help support immunity, and Ribena Plus with calcium for healthy bones.
The Japanese company is in discussions with banks including Morgan Stanley and Nomura about gathering a bid.
The move is in line with the company's intent to expand presence into western markets.
On the other hand, the British drugmaker intends to sell Lucozade and Ribena brands to focus on emerging markets.
Suntory produces soft drinks under the brands such as Orangina and Schweppes.