Morrisons (MRW.L) has agreed to a £7bn ($9.5bn) takeover by US private equity group Clayton, Dubilier & Rice (CD&R), which upped its bid for the supermarket chain, taking on rival suitor Fortress Investment Group.
Morrisons’ share price surged 4.5% on Friday morning.
Earlier, CD&R had made an offer of 230p a share, which valued Morrisons at £5.5bn, but this was rejected for undervaluing the retailer. It has now increased its offer to 285p.
Morrisons has accepted the latest offer, which beats competitor bidder Fortress.
Sir Terry Leahy, senior adviser to CD&R funds and former Tesco CEO, said: “the grocery sector in the UK is undergoing great change and we believe Morrisons is well placed, with CD&R’s support, to succeed in this environment.”
It has now said it is “considering its options” and and has asked Morrisons shareholders not to take any action.
An investor meeting to approve the Fortress bid, scheduled for 27 August, has been adjourned, the Financial Times reported. A meeting to vote on the CD&R offer is expected in October.
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