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Scottish & Newcastle facts for kids

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Scottish & Newcastle
Industry Brewing
Fate Acquired by consortium of Heineken and Carlsberg
Founded 1749
Defunct April 2008
Headquarters Edinburgh, Scotland, UK
Key people
Sir Brian Stewart (Chairman), John Dunsmore (Chief Executive)
Products Beer
Subsidiaries S&N UK; Alken-Maes; Beamish & Crawford; Brasseries Kronenbourg; Central de Cervejas; Hartwall; Home Ales; Mythos; Waverley TBS; S&N Pub Company

Scottish & Newcastle plc was a brewing company in Edinburgh, Scotland. It was an international beer business.

The company was bought by Heineken and Carlsberg in 2008. Heineken UK called themselves Scottish & Newcastle until 2009. The S&N Pub Enterprises pub part of the company has had its name changed to Star Pubs & Bars.


Wm Younger portrait
Portrait of William Younger by Alan Ramsay

The Company was created by Grizel Syme who ran her dead second husband's brewery. This brewery became William Younger & Co. It joined with McEwan's in 1931 and turned into Scottish Brewers. In 1960 it joined again to Newcastle Breweries to make Scottish & Newcastle.

By 1985, the company had become a brewer focused on Scotland and the North of England. It was ranked number five in the UK. By 1995, by buying Courage, S&N became the UK’s biggest brewer. Its Managed Pub division was called S&N Retail. It had 2,500 pubs. In 2000, S&N grew bigger by buying companies in Western Europe. By buying Hartwall in 2002, Finland’s biggest drink making business, S&N became owners of half of Baltic Beverages Holding (BBH) which had brewers all over East Europe.

In July 2003, S&N bought the Bulmers cider business, adding the Strongbow, Scrumpy Jack and Woodpecker brands to its group.

In November 2003, S&N sold the pubs to the Spirit Group. But they still looked after some pubs.

In 2004 lots of breweries were closed to save money.

In 2006, S&N and Swiss freight company, Kuehne and Nagel set up a drinks selling business.

On 17 October 2007, Heineken International and Carlsberg said that they were going to buy Scottish and Newcastle. On 25 October Heineken and Carlsberg said that they had sent a written offer to S&N. S&N didn't alllow this.

A new offer announced on 15 November 2007 by Carlsberg and Heineken. The new offer was bigger.

On 25 January 2008, S&N said they liked the deal.

The company was bought on 29 April 2008.

On 23 November 2009, the company changed its name to Heineken UK Ltd.


Scottish & Newcastle employed 40,000 people in the United Kingdom and Europe. It brewed beer at:

  • The Fountain Brewery, Edinburgh - closed 2004
  • The Tyne Brewery, Newcastle-upon-Tyne - closed 2005
  • The Federation Brewery, Gateshead - bought 2004, closed 2010
  • T & R Theakston's Brewery, Masham (S&N didn\t won much of this. It is now owned by the Theakston family)
  • John Smith's Brewery, Tadcaster
  • The Berkshire Brewery, Reading (closed April 2010)
  • The Royal Brewery, Manchester
  • Beamish Brewery, Cork
  • Crawford Brewery, Cork


S&N owned or three of the top ten beers in Europe.

  • Baltika (now owned by Carlsberg)
  • Foster's (now owned by Heineken)
  • Kronenbourg 1664. (now owned by Carlsberg)

It also owned other drink companies:

  • John Smith's (bought by Heineken)
  • Strongbow Cider in the UK. (bought by Heineken)
  • Sagres in Portugal (bought by Heineken)
  • Lapin Kulta in Finland (bought by Heineken)
  • Mythos in Greece (bought by Carlsberg)
  • Maes pils in Belgium (bought by Heineken)
  • Kingfisher in India (bought by Heineken)
  • Beamish Stout in Ireland (bought by Heineken)
  • Bulmers Cider in the UK. (bought by Heineken)
  • Newcastle Brown Ale, (bought by Heineken)
  • Grimbergen, a Belgian Abbey beer. (bought by Heineken)
  • McEwan's in Scotland. (bought by Heineken)
  • Younger's in Edinburgh, Scotland. (bought by Heineken)
  • Simonds in Reading, Berkshire. (bought by Wells & Young)

Some other brands they could use were:

  • Beamish
  • Courage
  • Foster's
  • Kronenbourg
  • McEwan's
  • Newcastle Brown Ale
  • John Smith's
  • Websters

Hofmeister was a pale lager made by S&N from the 1980s to 2003. The 1980s adverts showed a bear, George, with a shiny yellow jacket and a pork pie hat. The 1983 adverts were directed by Orson Welles. In 2016, the Hofmeister brand returned with a new 5% recipe.

Division of the business between the Carlsberg/Heineken group

Heineken acquired:

S&NUK; Beamish and Crawford - ROI; Hartwall - Finland; Alken Maes - Belgium; Central de Cervejas - Portugal; Indian JV with UB; US selling business

Carlsberg acquired:

Other half of Baltic Beverages Holdings; Kronenbourg - France; Mythos (beer) - Greece; Chongqing joint venture in China; Venture markets:- Switzerland; Africa; Hungary; Luxembourg; Indian Ocean; South and Central America Andorra and Asia.