Balfour Beatty rejects John Laing’s £1 billion offer for its investment portfolio

Balfour Beatty valued its portfolio at £1.05 billion in the summer

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The Independent Online

Balfour Beatty has rejected a £1 billion offer from John Laing Infrastructure Fund for its public–private partnership portfolio because it “falls significantly short” of its value.

Balfour Beatty shares jumped 3 per cent as some investors welcomed the board’s claim it could make more by “selling individual assets as each investment matures”.

 

But broker Investec warned it was a “brave” move to dismiss the cash offer for the portfolio, which includes a string of public-private partnerships on building projects such as NHS hospitals and schools.

Balfour Beatty valued its portfolio at £1.05 billion in the summer and later sold one asset at a 28 per cent premium.

The company will now carry out a fresh valuation — a move that is “slightly strange”, according to Investec, which asked: “Has the market really moved this much in three months?”

Balfour Beatty shares have fallen one third since a profit warning in May that forced out chief executive Andrew McNaughton. New boss Leo Quinn does not arrive until January.

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