Directors sell shares in Wassall

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The Independent Online
THREE directors of Wassall, the mini-conglomerate that lost the bid for Evode, yesterday sold 1.6 million Wassall shares - less than a month after it raised pounds 51.5m in a rights issue to finance the aborted deal, writes Heather Connon.

The bulk of the sale, representing 1.4 million shares, was to repay loans by Hanson made when Chris Miller, Wassall's chief executive, Philip Turner - both former Hanson employees - and David Roper acquired the business in 1988. Under the terms of the loan, Hanson could demand repayment if the shares went above 200p, which they did late last year.

Mr Roper also sold a further 243,544 shares for personal reasons and Mr Miller acquired 49,368. The sales were at 206p, raising a total of pounds 2.9m. Wassall's shares closed down 1p at 208p.

The loans and repayment conditions were disclosed in the offer document for Evode, but Hanson would not disclose the interest rates. It took a 15 per cent stake in the group, on preferential terms, in 1988, although this has now fallen to 8 per cent.

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