Birkby makes agreed pounds 58m bid for In Shops: Departing chief receives pounds 295,000 pay-off

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The Independent Online
BIRKBY, a Yorkshire workspace rental, vehicle hire and instalment credit company, has made an agreed pounds 58m bid for In Shops, the retail property group.

Birkby's directors said the two businesses were complementary, and that In Shops was poised to benefit from economic recovery. Birkby forecast that it would make pre-tax profits of not less than pounds 2.4m in the year to 31 March 1994, up from pounds 1.1m, with a final dividend of 4.8p (2.53p).

In Shops manages retail spaces in 66 shopping centres nationwide, and runs discount food stores through Milbank Foods, a recently acquired subsidiary. Profits were down 19 per cent at pounds 735,000 on turnover of pounds 14.3m in the six months to 30 September.

Bill Cran, Birkby's chief executive, said the enlarged group would be able to reduce head-office costs, although no redundancies were planned. Birkby's vehicle hire and credit services would be marketed to In Shop licensees. Birkby would expand outside the M62 corridor using In Shops management. In time, the group would also introduce a consumer credit business at In Store centres.

Tim Brookes, chief executive of In Shops, will leave the company with a pounds 295,000 pay-off. However, two other In Shops directors will join the board of the enlarged group.

Birkby is offering five new shares for every 12 In Shops shares, with a partial cash alternative. Birkby shares closed up 13p at 278p, and In Shops rose 30p to 113p.

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