The takeover of Lookers by Global Auto Holdings has been given the go-ahead by both boards, it was announced this afternoon.
A statement issued by Lookers just as the London Stock Exchange was due to close said that its board and that of the Canadian group Global Auto Holdings had agreed terms for all the issued, and to be issued, share capital of Lookers to be bought at the improved cash offer of 130p per share.
Global had earlier offered 120p per share but that was rejected by the biggest shareholder Cinch, which is owned by Constellation Automotive Group.
A revised offer of 130p per share – putting a £504.2m value on the company – was then put forward, and that was then backed.
Cinch holds some 19.5 per cent of Lookers’ shareholding, and its backing of the revised offer was seen as vital to the takeover happening.
Today’s announcement followed a court meeting held earlier in the day, where the necessary majority of scheme shares – 37.58 per cent of the issued share capital entitled to be voted on the scheme – gave it the thumbs-up.
The required majority of Lookers shares – 37.64 per cent of the issued ordinary share capital – then voted to pass the special resolution at a general meeting to approve the scheme.
Nearly four per cent rejected it at both meetings.
Although approved, there are still some conditions to be met, but assuming there are no stumbling blocks, it’s expected to take effect in the early part of this year’s fourth quarter.
Lookers will then be taken off the stock market.
The name Global Auto Holdings is a bidding vehicle for Canadian firm Alpha Auto Group.
Commenting on the news, UHY Hacker Young’s David Kendrick told Car Dealer: ‘As expected the green light has been given for the transaction to take place today.
‘I would imagine there will still be FCA and manufacturer discussions to be had for things to complete, but at the moment it’s looking positive and likely to happen before the year end.
‘It will certainly be interesting to see what happens post the deal completion.’