Property giant ‘minded’ to recommend £720m takeover offer

Crest Nicholson said on Wednesday that it was “minded” to recommend Bellway’s revised £720m takeover offer, pushing shares in the housebuilder higher.

The Surrey-based business said Bellway had put an improved bid on the table after two takeover approaches were rejected in May for being too low.

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.

It indicates that the company is happy with the price of the sweetened deal, having previously rejected two potential offers which it felt “significantly undervalued” the firm and its prospects.

One of the previous deals was worth about £650m.

Newcastle-based Bellway now has until 5pm on August 8 to make a firm offer or walk away.

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.

Shares in the housebuilding sector jumped last week on hopes that the new Labour government will deliver growth in new build homes.


Housebuilder shares rise on back of Labour win



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