GDF Suez deal in two weeks

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The merger of International Power, the FTSE-100 energy group, with the French giant GDF Suez should be completed within two weeks, according to insiders.

The sides are undestood to have set an informal timetable of completing the deal ahead of International Power's interim results in mid-August. Philip Cox, International's chief executive, is keen to recommend the combination to shareholders, but has yet to iron out the final details.

Shareholders are thought to back the deal, pleased that the move is, in effect, a merger not a takeover, as selling outright in the current climate would result in a poor payout.

Another major takeover, the £3bn offer for the engineering firm Tomkins from Onex and Canada Pension Plan, is on the rocks. Standard Life, an institutional shareholder, declared itself "disappointed" by the board's decision to accept the bid.

Two other funds, believed to be Invesco Perpetual and Schroders, are known to be in agreement with Standard Life.