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BI bid for Cortworth to make chief pounds 8m richer

The chief executive of Cortworth, the specialist engineering group, stands to share more than pounds 8m with his family, the spoils of a pounds 93.6m agreed bid being made for the company by BI Group.

Bill McMurray, Cortworth's chief executive who, with his family, owns in excess of 4 million shares, will make pounds 8.38m from the deal. BI Group, which specialises in engineering products, has pitched its offer at 196p per Cortworth share. Graham Wagster, the finance director, and his family will gain pounds 3.48m, and the chairman, Roger Pinnington, will pick up pounds 2.056m. Cortworth only floated on the stock market in December 1995, two years after Mr McMurray led a management buyout from Williams Holdings.

Bijan Sedghi, chairman and chief executive of BI, said yesterday that the two companies had synergies, particularly in metal forming and finishing and plastic technologies. "BI's management wish to grow the group's core competences in metal forming and finishing and plastics technologies. The acquisition of Cortworth is consistent with this strategy."

Mr McMurray said: "We are pleased with this new partnership. The offer represents good value for Cortworth shareholders and the combination of the two companies increases volumes and widens opportunities to extend our services in the markets common to both companies."

The bid terms represent a premium of 25.6 per cent to Cortworth's share price of 156p at close on Thursday. The shares soared 36.5p to close at 192.5p last night.