Lavendon rejects TVH takeover bid

By Murray Pollok22 November 2016

Lavendon has rejected a takeover bid by TVH Group, saying that the offer did not have sufficient shareholder support and represented a significant risk to the business.

TVH, which already has major aerial platform rental operations in the Netherlands (Gunco) and Germany (Mateco), offered 205 pence per share, valuing Lavendon at £348 million, a 47.5% premium on the price at close of trading on Monday.

TVH approached Lavendon’s board in August this year and agreed on 16 October to make a cash offer, with the deal subject to it obtaining support from Lavendon’s major shareholders.

Lavendon said today that it had consulted with some of the shareholders approached by TVH and that “the level of support anticipated was not forthcoming.”

In a statement, Lavendon said it was “in robust health, well positioned across diverse geographic markets, with strong revenue growth, profits, cash flow and ROCE and a clear strategic direction to deliver substantial shareholder value over the medium term.”

TVH’s bid was announced early on Tuesday morning and the Belgian company said it had received undertakings to sell from shareholders representing 12.3% of the share capital of Lavendon. It said the 205 pence offer was final, although it reserved the right to increase its offer if a further bid was received from a third party.

It is the second time that TVH has approached Lavendon regarding an acquisition, with Lavendon rejecting a TVH offer in 2010. TVH has since been one of the most acquisitive rental businesses in Europe, buying Gunco, Metaco and Industrial Access.

TVH said “the combination of TVH's Equipment business with Lavendon would be highly complementary in terms of capabilities, geographical footprint, customers and suppliers. It represents a significant step forward in TVH's strategy to expand its specialised equipment rental business.”

The deal would combine Lavendon's leading market position in the UK and growing business in France with TVH Equipment's operations in other major European markets, as well as give TVH a foothold in the Middle East, where Lavendon has a strong presence.

Lavendon advised shareholders to take no action and said that it would make a further announcement in due course.

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