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20/07/1999

Conditional Acquisition of Certain Assets of Allied Domecq plc

Conditional Acquisition of Certain Assets of Allied Domecq plc ("ALLIED") from Punch Taverns Group Limited ("PUNCH") for £995 million


Bass announces today, 20 July 1999, that it has entered into an agreement with Punch (the "Agreement"), to acquire up to 650 pubs and a 25 per cent shareholding in Britannia Soft Drinks Limited ("Britannia") from Punch for £995 million in Bass shares and cash in the event that Punch acquires Allied Domecq Retailing (Holdings) Limited ("Allied Retail").

Bass' consideration under the Agreement will be met, subject to tax clearance being received, by the issue of 79 million new Bass shares, valued at £741.4 million based on Bass' share price of 938.5 pence at the close of business on 19 July 1999 and the payment of £253.6 million of cash. In the event tax clearance for the partial share offer is not received, Bass' consideration under the Agreement will be met by the payment of £995 million in cash.

Bass has conditionally agreed to receive from Punch specific pubs that will have generated total profit before overheads, interest, tax and depreciation of £102 million in the twelve month period ending July 1999 or August 1999, depending on the date of completion of the Acquisition. It is estimated that this will involve between 550 and 650 pubs. Bass has also conditionally agreed to acquire Allied's 25 per cent shareholding in Britannia. The Agreement is conditional only on Punch successfully acquiring Allied Retail.

This acquisition and Bass' subsequent investment in the assets would be immediately earnings enhancing and will cover Bass' cost of capital.

Sir Ian Prosser, Chairman, Bass PLC commented:

"We are pleased that the Board of Allied have recommended Punch's proposal to Allied's shareholders. We believe this delivers certainty for Allied's shareholders and a value creative transaction for Bass."

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For further information, please contact:

Richard North, Finance Director    0171 409 1919
Jonathan Atack, Investor Relations    0171 409 8571
Mark Rigby, Media Relations    0171 409 8153

Notes:

This announcement has been approved solely for the purposes of section 57 of the Financial Services Act 1986 by J Henry Schroder & Co Limited ("Schroders"), which is regulated in the United Kingdom by the Securities and Futures Authority Limited.

Schroders is acting exclusively for Bass and no one else in connection with the proposed acquisition of Selected Allied assets and will not be responsible to anyone other than Bass for providing the protections afforded to customers of Schroders nor for providing advice in relation to this acquisition.

The offer of the Share Alternative will not be made directly or indirectly in or into the United States, Canada, Australia or Japan.

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