New bid trumps Siebe offer for Whessoe
Thursday 27 February 1997
Seatex Garex, a Norwegian navigation systems group soon to be renamed Navia, and Endress & Hauser, a Swiss maker of process controls, have teamed up to make a joint bid at 175p a share, well above the 155p which the Whessoe board backed a fortnight ago. The consortium scooped up a 10.6 per cent stake at 175p in its target yesterday from its three leading institutional shareholders: M&G, Aberforth and PDFM, the fund management arm of UBS, the Swiss bank which is advising the bidders.
News of the bid prompted a 27p rise in Whessoe's share price to 184p yesterday as the market anticipated Siebe returning with a higher offer. Siebe would only say it was considering its options and would make a statement in due course.
The move by the continental groups follows an approach by Seatex to Whessoe in November 1995 for its Autronica offshoot, a marine automation and fire detection business which, like Seatex, is based in Tronheim, Norway. The Norwegian group later teamed up with Endress and earlier this month entered discussions with the Siebe board in an attempt to gain a recommendation for a bid for the whole group. These talks lapsed after Siebe announced what was at was at that stage a higher offer.
Christopher Fleetwood, Whessoe's chief executive, described the latest move as "a slightly unusual turn of events". The latest bid would have to be considered by the board before it reported back to shareholders, he said.
The recent share price performance represents a remarkable rebound from the six-year low of 86.5p hit last December after the group unveiled a 57 per cent fall in profits to pounds 560,000 in its first full-year since withdrawing from its former engineering businesses. Analysts are expecting profits to rebound to around pounds 4m this year, which the consortium said meant its offer was worth over 22 times expected earnings.
Mr Fleetwood said around half the group's revenues would be derived from new products by 1998, including a large number due later this year.
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Weather bomb in pictures: Storms cuts power for tens of thousands – and snow is on the way
Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
Russell Brand was rendered speechless on Question Time by this man
Fury at Airbus after it hints the super-jumbo may be mothballed
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Shock poll shows voters believe Ukip is to the left of the Tories
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Ukip candidate jokes about 'shooting peasants' in racist and homophobic rant
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
iJobs Money & Business
$200 - $350 per annum: Carlton Senior Appointments: Managing Producer Office...
$125 - $225 per annum: Carlton Senior Appointments: San Fran - Investment Advi...
Up to £70,000 per annum + benefits: Sheridan Maine: Are you a qualified accoun...
Up to £65,000 per annum + benefits: Sheridan Maine: Are you a qualified accoun...