Town's MSP raises A.G. Barrs merger proposals with First Minister

Written by Scott Campbell.
Published at 21:15 GMT on Friday, 14th September2012.
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


Picture is copyright of Bill Henry and is used on his courtesy.
EARLIER this week, SNP MSP for Cumbernauld and Kilsyth Jamie Hepburn raised the possible merger between AG Barr and Britvic with Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond.

The question taken at First Minister’s Questions follows the recent announcement that the two companies were planning to embark on talks aimed at a potential merger.

The First Minister confirmed that he is monitoring the situation closely and will continue to do so. He also stated that there was “every indication that the strength and excellence of that company, its history and its iconic status, and the excellence of its staff, will ensure that it remains and expands its operations in Scotland.”

Commenting Mr Hepburn said: “There are few brands which are as synonymously Scottish as Irn Bru, and I hope that regardless of changes at the company that it remains headquartered in Cumbernauld and that it maintains its local production; given their position as an important local employer.”

“As such I was happy to raise this matter with the First Minister and I was pleased by his positive response. I will continue to pursue this matter as more details emerge of the companies’ plans and I have written to AG Barr to seek details of these matters. I look forward to receiving their reply in due course.”

The full transcription of the exchange is as follows:

Jamie Hepburn: The chamber will be aware of the proposed merger between AG Barr, which is based in my constituency, and the Essex-based firm Britvic. Does the First Minister agree that, given the iconic Scottish brands that are involved, if any merger goes ahead, such a company should be headquartered in Scotland and that production should remain an on-going concern at the Cumbernauld site?

First Minister: Yes—it is certainly right and proper of Jamie Hepburn, as the constituency member, to raise those issues. However, he will know about, as I do—I have monitored them closely—the positive statements from AG Barr on the future of the company if the agreed merger goes ahead. There is every indication that the strength and excellence of that company, its history and its iconic status, and the excellence of its staff, will ensure that it remains and expands its operations in Scotland.