Political stalemate sinks £30bn defence merger
A proposed £30bn merger between the British defence giant BAE Systems and the European aerospace company EADS collapsed yesterday after weeks of political wrangling between London, Paris and Berlin.
The two firms finally threw in the towel yesterday afternoon on a deal that would have created the world's biggest aerospace and defence group, after failing to unite the demands of the British, French and German governments over how the resulting entity would be run. "It has become clear that the interests of the parties' government stakeholders cannot be adequately reconciled with each other," the companies said. "[We] have therefore decided it is in the best interests of their companies and shareholders to terminate the discussions and to continue to focus on delivering their respective strategies."
The French and German governments each own a 22.5 per cent share of EADS, which makes Airbus aircraft. The British Government has a "golden share" in BAE which allows it to veto a takeover of the company, which is involved in building the US Lockheed Martin F-35 and Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets, as well as the Royal Navy's Astute class submarines.
Ultimately, the three governments were unable to come close to agreeing how much of the combined business they would own and run, and whether it would be headquartered in Toulouse or Munich.
Both companies pointed to Germany as the main reason for their decision to abort talks ahead of a deadline imposed by the UK Takeover Panel to "put up or shut up". This required the companies to strike a deal or walk away – although it is likely the groups could have been granted an extension if the talks had suggested it would be worthwhile to continue.
Asked if he had encountered more problems with the Germans than the French, the chief executive of BAE Systems, Ian King, said: "That would be an accurate representation".
Poveglia: 'World's most haunted island' up for auction...is anyone brave enough to buy it?
South Korea ferry passengers who were told to stay put 'got trapped' aboard sinking ship
Are beards attractive? Ryan Gosling says yes, but science says no. Take the A-list facial hair challenge and find out who's right
Oscar Pistorius trial: Defence witness 'unqualified' to testify
Andre Johnson: Wu-Tang Clan-discovered rapper severed his penis and jumped from LA building
The food poverty scandal that shames Britain: Nearly 1m people rely on handouts to eat – and benefit reforms may be to blame
US Navy christens huge $3 billion destroyer ship USS Zumwalt that appears as a fishing boat on enemy radar
Scottish independence: It is the English who should be on their knees, begging the Scots to vote ‘No’
Nigel Farage fatigue? Half of voters ‘immune’ to Ukip’s appeal
Nigel Farage on Have I Got News For You: Ukip leader ridiculed over expenses and party 'fruitcakes'
Nigel Farage: I’m taking on the status quo, and the Establishment’s fighting back
- 1 Poveglia: 'World's most haunted island' up for auction...is anyone brave enough to buy it?
- 2 Big Bang Theory to get special Star Wars episode with help from Lucasfilm
- 3 Babies cry at night to stop mothers procreating, scientists claim
- 4 Pharrell Williams 'Happy': British Muslims dance to song in video
- 5 24 people applied for the 'world's toughest job', here are their interviews
iJobs Money & Business
£40000 - £50000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Client Relationship Manager - SQL...
£35000 - £50000 per annum: Pro-Recruitment Group: Take your chance to join the...
£40000 - £50000 per annum + BONUS + BENEFITS: Harrington Starr: A leading, Cit...
£35000 - £50000 per annum + Bonus + Benefits: Pro-Recruitment Group: You must ...