Granada's decision to increase its cash alternative to 686p means there is little time left to decide. Until Friday, 25 February to be exact.
Sticking with LWT looks the least favourable option. ITV is now a big boys' game, and, on its own, LWT risks being at a disadvantage compared with much larger, better resourced and more powerful combines such as MAI/Anglia and Carlton/Central.
LWT's share price is also buoyed by the bid; yet despite a desperate search no alternative bidder or trade investor has ridden to the rescue. The likelihood must be that it would fall steeply if the bid were to fail.
The verdict in the City yesterday was that Granada had done enough to secure LWT. But taking Granada's shares has its own disadvantages. An investment in the conglomerate at this stage is a bet on Gerry Robinson's ability to continue the process he began just over two years ago of turning the company around.
He has started well. But Granada's dependence on the rental and, to a lesser extent, the catering businesses, is still a source of concern, while the price paid for LWT will be hard to justify. Shareholders should ask themselves whether Granada represents as exciting a prospect as, say, Reuters. If not, take the money and run, but first wait for the drama to draw to its close.Reuse content