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Crest Nicholson poised to back £700m Bellway bid

10:36, 10th July 2024
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Crest Nicholson said on Wednesday that it was "minded" to recommend Bellway's revised £700m takeover offer, pushing shares in the housebuilder higher.

Bellway submitted a third non-binding offer earlier this month, valued at 273p per share, after two earlier proposals were rejected for undervaluing the business.

Under the terms of the latest approach, Crest Nicholson shareholders would receive 0.099 shares in Bellway for each one they own in Crest Nicholson, as well as a divided of 4p per share.

Crest Nicholson acknowledged that the revised proposal remained subject to a number of pre-conditions, including due diligence.

But it added: "The board has confirmed to Bellway that the revised proposal is at a value that it would be minded recommend unanimously to...shareholders, should a firm intention to make an offer be announced."

The deadline for Bellway to make a formal offer under Takeover Panel rules - a so-called put up or shut up - has been extended to 8 August.

As at 1015 BST, shares in Crest Nicholson were trading 3% higher at 245.4p, while Bellway was 2% lower at 2,536p.

Earlier this month Crest Nicholson rejected another offer from Avant Homes, which is controlled by New York hedge fund Elliott and led by former Persimmon chief Jeff Fairburn.

UK housebuilders have been facing tough conditions in recent years, including limited supply, surging inflation, the cost of living crisis and higher borrowing costs.

But shares in the sector jumped last week on hopes that the new Labour government will revigourate the sector, including overhauling the planning system.


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