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Morrisons Auction Won By US Private Equity Group

Morrisons trolleys - CREDIT -James W Copeland
  • CD&R Bidco (Market Bidco Limited, a newly incorporated entity formed by Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, LLP in its capacity as adviser to Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, LLC as manager of CD&R Fund XI) prevails with highest offer for Morrisons following conclusion of Auction Procedure
  • CD&R Bidco has confirmed to the Morrisons Board that the commercial justification for its offer and its previously stated intentions regarding Morrisons business remain unchanged
  • Morrisons Board views the CD&R Final Offer as superior and accordingly the Morrisons Board unanimously recommends the CD&R Final Offer
  • CD&R Final Offer is final and cannot be increased unless a third party announces a firm intention to make an offer for Morrisons
  • CD&R Final Offer Price set at 287 pence in cash for each Morrisons Share, representing a premium of approximately 61 per cent. to the Closing Price of 178 pence per Morrisons Share prior to the commencement of the Offer Period

Commenting on the CD&R Final Offer, Andrew Higginson, Chair of Morrisons, said:

"Today's final offer from CD&R represents excellent value for shareholders while at the same time protecting the fundamental character of Morrisons for all stakeholders.

CD&R have good retail experience, a strong record of developing and growing the businesses in which they invest, and they share our vision and ambition for Morrisons. We remain confident that CD&R will be a responsible, thoughtful and careful owner of an important British grocery business. Shareholders will now have the final say and, if the offer is approved, the Board is confident that Morrisons will continue to go from strength to strength under CD&R's ownership."

Commenting on the CD&R Final Offer, Sir Terry Leahy, Senior Adviser to CD&R funds, said:

"We are gratified by the recommendation of the Morrisons Board and look forward to the shareholder vote to approve the transaction. We continue to believe that Morrisons is an excellent business, with a strong management team, a clear strategy, and good prospects."

The CD&R offer of 287 pence per share was one pence more per share than that of the Fortress consortium. 

In July 2021, Morrisons turned down a £5.5bn offer from CD&R, saying it significantly undervalued the business. Morrisons shareholders will vote on the proposal at a meeting which is expected to take place on 19 October.

Source : Insight DIY and Morrisons

Image : James W Copeland / 

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04 October 2021

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