Another Morrisons shareholder hits out at proposed £6.3bn takeover bid

Another Morrisons shareholder hits out at proposed £6.3bn takeover bid
The news comes a day after Singapore's GIC fund said it would take part in the consortium to buy Morrisons via its Cambourne Life investment vehicle.
// Top 10 investor JO Hambro says the 254p per share offer being made for Morrisons was too low
// It joins Morrisons’ biggest shareholder Silchester, which went on the record on Tuesday night to oppose the deal
// JO Hambro’s & Silchester’s opposition to the Fortress takeover bid could it to increase the offer

A second shareholder in Morrisons has reportedly come forward to express opposition to a £6.3 billion takeover bid by a consortium of investors.

According to the The Telegraph, top 10 investor JO Hambro said the 254p per share offer being made by the consortium, led by US-based private equity firm Fortress, was too low.

It joins Morrisons’ biggest shareholder Silchester, which went on the record on Tuesday night to oppose the deal and called for more time for other potential bidders to come forward.


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JO Hambro said: “We reiterate our view that any offer for the group approaching 270p-a-share merits engagement and consideration.

“With the share price as high as 269p in the last week, we believe the market shares this sentiment.”

The investor added that the Fortress-led takeover bid “falls short of this level”.

The news comes a day after Singapore’s GIC, the country’s sovereign wealth fund, said it would take part in the consortium to buy Morrisons via its Cambourne Life investment vehicle.

Fortress will continue to hold a majority position in the consortium – which also includes Apollo, another private equity firm – and the value of the takeover offer will remain unchanged.

However, sources speaking to The Telegraph suggested that while talks between Fortress and Apollo were in their final stages, there is no guarantee could be made.

There is also speculation that JO Hambro’s and Silchester’s opposition to the Fortress takeover bid could force the firm to increase its offer.

Morrisons’ board of directors had already agreed the takeover move earlier this month and recommended shareholders to approve it when they meet to vote on the matter on August 16.

It needs the approval of at least 75 per cent of shareholders for the takeover bid to be successful.

The retailer also agreed to Fortress’ bid days after it rebuffed an initial £5.5 billion approach from rival private equity firm Clayton, Dubilier & Rice (CD&R).

UK takeover regulators have given CD&R a deadline of August 9 to either place its own firm bid for the chain or walk away.

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