Securicor revamp lifts Cellnet bid hopes

Securicor, the security and Cellnet communications group, yesterday announced it was to sweep away its archaic multi-tier voting structure in a move that immediately fuelled speculation that the company was intent on selling its 40 per cent stake in Cellnet, the mobile telephone operator.

Securicor will combine its twin company, Security Services, in which it owns a 51 per cent stake, into one holding company called Securicor. It is scrapping its three different classes of shares, with the trustees of the original founders surrendering control.

The move pleased the City and Securicor `A' shares moved 200p higher at pounds 18.05. One analyst said: "It's long overdue and people have been looking for a simplification for some time. The company has been over-complicated."

Another said: "It will make the stock more liquid and the company easier to understand. A lot of institutions refuse to buy shares in companies with two-tier voting structures."

The City immediately started to speculate on the implications for Securicor's Cellnet stake. The Government last year blocked an attempt by Securicor to sell the Cellnet stake to BT, which already has a 60 per cent holding, by refusing "at present" to lift the ban on BT taking 100 per cent of the mobile company.

However, Sir Peter Bonfield, BT's new chief executive, is known to be keen to achieve full ownership. With competition increasing and the Orange flotation proving popular it is possible that the DTI might change its mind. There is also a view that a Labour government would look more favourably on the move, which BT has pursued since 1982.

City analysts believe that BT would have to pay about pounds 1.5bn for Cellnet, which accounts for about 70 per cent of Securicor's profits. When the sale was prevented last year Securicor said that it would not rule out disposal to a third party or "some sort of flotation".

The group said yesterday that no discussions are taking place with BT or any other potential buyer and that "the directors believe that the interests of shareholders will be best served by retaining the Cellnet stake for the present". However, it added: "Nevertheless, all options will be kept under review."

Under the terms of the deal, 600 million new shares will be created with Securicor shareholders owning 65.4 per cent and Security Services shareholders the remainder.

Existing Securicor shareholders will receive 6.7 new shares for every ordinary share and 3.8 new shares for their `A' shares. Security Services shareholders will receive 3.84 shares for each share held. Trading in the new shares should commence in June.

Comment, page 17

PROMOTED VIDEO
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
News
newsComedy club forced to apologise as maggots eating a dead pigeon fall out of air-conditioning
Life and Style
Balmain's autumn/winter 2014 campaign, shot by Mario Sorrenti and featuring Binx Walton, Cara Delevingne, Jourdan Dunn, Ysaunny Brito, Issa Lish and Kayla Scott
fashionHow Olivier Rousteing is revitalising the house of Balmain
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Christian Grey cradles Ana in the Fifty Shades of Grey film
filmFifty Shades of Grey trailer provokes moral outrage in US
News
people
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Senior Risk Manager - Banking - London - £650

£600 - £650 per day: Orgtel: Conduct Risk Liaison Manager - Banking - London -...

The benefits of being in Recruitment at SThree...

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Comission: SThree: SThree, International Recruitme...

Test Analyst - UAT - Credit Risk

£280 - £300 per day + competitive: Orgtel: Test Analyst, Edinburgh, Credit Ris...

Trainee Recruitment Consultants - Banking & Finance

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £40,000: SThree: SThree Group have been well e...

Day In a Page

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on
Edinburgh Fringe 2014: The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee

Edinburgh Fringe 2014

The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee
Evan Davis: The BBC’s wolf in sheep’s clothing to take over at Newsnight

The BBC’s wolf in sheep’s clothing

What will Evan Davis be like on Newsnight?
Finding the names for America’s shame: What happens to the immigrants crossing the US-Mexico border without documents who never make it past the Arizona desert?

Finding the names for America’s shame

The immigrants crossing the US-Mexico border without documents who never make it past the Arizona desert
Inside a church for Born Again Christians: Speaking to God in a Manchester multiplex

Inside a church for Born Again Christians

As Britain's Anglican church struggles to establish its modern identity, one branch of Christianity is booming
Rihanna, Kim Kardashian and me: How Olivier Rousteing is revitalising the house of Balmain

Olivier Rousteing is revitalising the house of Balmain

Parisian couturier Pierre Balmain made his name dressing the mid-century jet set. Today, Olivier Rousteing – heir to the house Pierre built – is celebrating their 21st-century equivalents. The result? Nothing short of Balmania
Cancer, cardiac arrest, HIV and homelessness - and he's only 39

Incredible survival story of David Tovey

Tovey went from cooking for the Queen to rifling through bins for his supper. His is a startling story of endurance against the odds – and of a social safety net failing at every turn
Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride