Oct 15, 2020

City Bulletin: Heineken-owned pub group fined £2m for breaking tie-in rules

A Heineken-owned pub group has been fined £2m after "Seriously and repeatedly" breaking the legally-binding Pubs Code over almost three years. Star Pubs and Bars, which operates the pub estate business of Heineken in the UK, is in trouble over so-called pub tie rules. The Pubs Code Adjudicator said Star had "Persisted in forcing its tenants to sell unreasonable levels of Heineken beers and ciders" when tenants wanted to break the tie with the brewer. Pub group Marston's is at the other end of the spectrum: its sales since reopening in July were down 10 per cent, though that is better than the pub sector as a whole. Its revenues for the six months to September were 57 per cent higher than last year.

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