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RANK shares rose 12 per cent after a newspaper report that US venture capital funds are preparing a hostile bid that could value the UK's largest bingo and casino company at pounds 3bn..

US investment bank Blackstone Group is considering a bid. Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., the largest US buyout fund, is also said to be weighing an offer. Funds are thought to be planning an offer at around 400 pence a share after Rank publishes first-half results this month. A plunging share price has made Rank an obvious target for the US. Shares have dropped 17 per cent in the past month alone amid concern that earnings will suffer as consumer spending begins to slow.