Ladbroke calls to arms
Sunday 10 December 1995
The group has sent out Section 212 notices, a legal device to penetrate nominee accounts and establish the beneficial owners of shares. "Ladbroke has prepared itself for any eventuality," a senior company source said.
Takeover talk gripped the shares last week, pushing them up from 143p to a high of 160p, before closing at 156p on Friday.
Most interest focused on the brewer Bass, which was tipped to announce a bid on Wednesday, when it unveiled sparkling full-year figures, up 11 per cent to pounds 599m. No bid materialised, though Bass side-stepped questions about its intentions, pure or otherwise. But sources close to Ladbroke said a bid from that quarter would have been unlikely, given Bass's traditionally unaggressive style.
Analysts have since downplayed the speculation, saying a bid and the subsequent break-up of the group would face serious challenges.
However, the City regards a bid for Ladbroke as a profitable move for the right company. But there are some obstacles a bidder must surmount, not least Ladbroke's original business: its betting shops. In addition, the Hilton hotel brand is split - California-based Hilton Hotels Corp owns the rights in the US.
One effect of the takeover talk has been to boost Ladbroke's flagging shares. At a recent meeting of the Stock Exchange committee to decide new entrants into the FT-SE 100 index of leading blue-chip companies, Ladbroke was capitalised as the 118th largest company. Fortuitously, the bid talk emerged in time for it to escape the ignominy of expulsion from the index, and the consequent sale of shares by index tracker funds.
Top Gear presenter is no stranger to foot-in-mouth controversy
New essay by JK Rowling went live on Pottermore site this morning
Mike Tyson branded 'superhero' after a surprise good turn
Charlie Sheen could be set to revive his role as a hedonistic womaniser
Review: Mike Leigh's biopic is a rambling, rich character study
Want to ward off (or welcome) trick-or-treaters? Here's how
- 1 'Nasa Confirms Six Days of Darkness in December': No, they don't - it's a hoax
- 2 Canadian actor punched in face after 'Islamophobia' experiment goes wrong in wake of Ottawa shooting
- 3 Topshop at centre of row over body image as 'shocking' skinny mannequin photo goes viral
- 4 If you think Russell Brand’s new book is confused, you should read what his critics have to say about it
- 5 Kentucky gang rape: 15-year-old boy left in critical condition after sexual attack by group at party
'Nasa Confirms Six Days of Darkness in December': No, they don't - it's a hoax
Canadian actor punched in face after 'Islamophobia' experiment goes wrong in wake of Ottawa shooting
Halloween 2014: From the Screaming Man of Pluckley to the 'White Lady' of the Tower of London - Britain's 20 most haunted places
Russian politician says Apple CEO Tim Cook should be 'banned' from country after coming out as gay
Kentucky gang rape: 15-year-old boy left in critical condition after sexual attack by group at party
Pope Francis declares evolution and Big Bang theory are real and God is not 'a magician with a magic wand'
Huge surge in Ukip support after EU funding row, according to new poll
Ukip ‘exploiting grooming scandal’ to secure party’s first police chief
Nigel Farage: 'There’s nothing wrong with white people blacking up'
Maureen Lipman says 'she can't vote Labour while Ed Miliband is leader'
Muslims, immigration and teenage pregnancy: British people are ignorant about almost everything
iJobs Money & Business
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £35K: SThree: We consistently strive to be the...
£20000 - £23250 Per Annum pro rata: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Pro rata ...
£40 - 48k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Marketing Manager to join...
£45,000 - £65,000: Saxton Leigh: Our client is a well-known APAC Corporate and...