§ Sir Charles Morrison
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) whether he will make it his policy to take into account the level of gearing by Coats Viyella plc in mounting its bid for Tootal Group plc before reaching a decision on whether to allow this bid to proceed;
(2) what assessment he has made of the relative level of gearing of a merged company consisting of Coats Viyella plc and Tootal Group plc if the current bid for Tootal Group is successful as against that which would have obtained if the two companies had merged by agreement in 1989; and what weight he will give to this in deciding whether to allow the bid to proceed.
§ Mr. Carr
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what information he has on the prospective gearing of the combined company if the acquisition of Tootal Group plc by Coats Viyella plc is successful and on how Coats Viyella plc intends to fund the consequential rationalisation costs of such a merger.
§ Mr. Bermingham
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what consideration he is giving to the respective EC market shares for named brand textile products for Coats Viyella plc and Tootal Group plc in his consideration of the proposed takeover; if he will make it his policy to take into consideration the extent of which Coats Viyella plc has acted in accordance with the required accounting procedures in declaring its annual results for the last financial year; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Redwood
In reaching his decision on whether to refer the proposed acquisition by Coats Viyella of Tootal Group to the Monopolies and Mergers Commission, my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State will take into account all relevant aspects of the proposal, in the light of the advice of the Director General of Fair Trading.28W
§ Mr. Redwood
No. In reaching his decision on whether or not to refer the proposed acquisition by Coats Viyella of Tootal Group to the MMC, my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State will be taking into account the advice of the Director General of Fair Trading. The director general's advice on merger references may contain commercially sensitive information, including financial information on the companies concerned, and is not made public.