Property investor Robert Tchenguiz has made a confirmed £3bn bid for pubs and restaurants group Spirit, which is owned by private equity companies. Last December, his Globe Pub Company bought 364 pubs from Spirit for £345m as a platform to expand into the industry. Other suitors for Spirit include Punch Taverns, Mitchells & Butlers, Clearbrook Capital Partners and the Australian bank Macquarie. Spirit manages 1,832 pubs across the UK and this month reported like-for-like sales growth of 3.9% for the fourth quarter. Last month the company sold 178 city centre pubs and bars to the Tattershall Castle Group for £177m to focus on its core business. The Business 23/10/05 page 10