Capital Radio readies £130m Border TV bid

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The Independent Online

Capital Radio is understood to be preparing this week to wade into the bid battle being waged over Border Television, with an offer expected to be worth in excess of £130m.

This would see the London-based broadcaster offer upwards of £12 per share, topping a bid from Scottish Radio Holdings (SRH), made last month, which values Border at £113m or about £10.54 per share.

Under that offer, which Border has rejected as inadequate, shareholders could choose an all-stock option or a cash alternative of £10.25 per share.

Border, however, has been in talks with a range of radio groups during the past fortnight. Potential suitors, in addition to Capital Radio, are believed to include Chrysalis; Kelvin MacKenzie's Wireless Group; and Guardian Media Group.

SRH's offer now lags Border's market valuation, indicating that investor expect a higher offer to emerge. Border closed at £11.55 on Friday, up 15p, valuing the company at £125m.

Border, the third-smallest ITV franchise, owns Century Radio in Manchester. It is believed that Capital would sell on Border's television business to either Granada or Scottish Media Group. It could also decide to keep the TV business, but contract it to one of the ITV companies to operate.