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UK’s Morrisons rejects $7.6 billion takeover offer

British supermarket group Morrisons has rejected a proposed £5.52 billion ($7.62 billion) cash offer from US private equity firm Clayton, Dubilier & Rice (CD&R), saying it is far too low. Britain’s fourth largest grocer by sales after Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Asda, said it received the “unsolicited, highly conditional non-binding” proposal of 230 pence a share on Monday.

The board of Bradford, northern England-based Morrisons rejected the proposal on Thursday.

“The board of Morrisons evaluated the conditional proposal together with its financial adviser, Rothschild & Co, and unanimously concluded that the conditional proposal significantly undervalued Morrisons and its future prospects,” the group said in a statement on Saturday. Shares in Morrisons, down 5.5% over the last year, closed on Friday at 182 pence, valuing the group at £4.33 billion.

Morrisons said CD&R’s proposal provided for Morrisons shareholders to also still receive a final ordinary pidend of 5.11 pence per share announced on March 11.

( Originally published on Jun 20, 2021 )