Intu considering John Whitaker’s £2.8bn takeover bid

Intu shopping centre

Save Save A new Debenhams department store at Intu's Watford

The group's possible new suitors will now be given access to company documents for due diligence as it considers whether to make a firm offer - a firm decision must be made by November 1.

Shopping centre chain Intu is considering a takeover offer from a consortium including British billionaire John Whittakar, Saudi investment group Olayan, and Brookfield Property Group.

"Following further engagement, on 17 October 2018 intu received a revised indicative proposal from the Consortium of 215 pence per share in cash, subject to an adjustment for dividends as set out below (the "Revised Indicative Proposal")". Olayan has 2% of Intu's shares, and also owns 25% of Peel, having bought into the company as part of a property acquisition in 1987.

Accounting for any dividends payable, including Intu's interim dividend of 4.6p per share due to be paid on Nov 20, the revised offer to take the company private stands at £2.10 per share.

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Intu has had several near-takeovers over the last few years, the value of which has steadily decreased, from a £5bn offer from Simon Property Group in 2011, to a £3.4bn deal with Hammerson which fell through earlier this year.

They added; "Management has repeatedly maintained that its prime retail assets are resilient and trading well with negligible impact from wider occupier weakness".

It added that over the previous five months, "the financial strength of retailers and other tenants in the United Kingdom has softened and a number of retailers have entered into administrations or CVAs, while consumer confidence has also remained subdued".

The shopping centre group is behind 18 United Kingdom retail destinations, including the Trafford and Arndale Centres in Manchester, Lakeside in Essex and Metrocentre in Gateshead.

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