Top court orders 'status quo' in United Spirits-Diageo deal

NEW DELHI Mon Feb 10, 2014 2:05pm IST

Tripods of television crew stand in front of the Supreme Court building in New Delhi December 7, 2010. REUTERS/B Mathur/Files

Tripods of television crew stand in front of the Supreme Court building in New Delhi December 7, 2010.

Credit: Reuters/B Mathur/Files

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NEW DELHI (Reuters) - The Supreme Court on Monday directed that the "status quo" be maintained in the sale of United Spirits(UNSP.NS) to British group Diageo Plc (DGE.L) until April, when the court will hear the matter again.

In December, a regional Indian court ordered the annulment of the sale in response to a petition by creditors of United Breweries Holdings(UBHL.NS), which sold its stake in United Spirits to Diageo through a complicated share transaction.

Diageo had said it will appeal the decision.

The Supreme Court issued a notice to both United Spirits and Diageo on Monday and said it would hear the matter at length.

Diageo completed its takeover of United Spirits in July, almost eight months after the companies announced the deal because of legal and regulatory difficulties.

(Reporting by Suchitra Mohanty; Writing by Nandita Bose)

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