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Gloucestershire Business News

Now the Dutch scupper takeover of Gloucester retail park owner

After fending off a French takeover the business which owns St Oswalds Retail Park looked set to revert to its merger with Intu.

If it happened it would also join owners Hammerson at the hip with the owners of Gloucester Quays and made it part of a multi-billion pound company.

Peel Group, the parent company of Gloucester Quays' manager Peel Lifestyle Outlets, would also have a 15 per cent stake in the new £21 billion business

Peel Group's owner and deputy chairman of Intu, John Whittaker, could well become the deputy chairman of the new enlarged business.

Now that too has been called into question after one of Hammerson's biggest investors, Dutch institutional Investor APG, spoke out against any such deal.

APG, the second largest stakeholder in Hammerson, said the proposed merger with Intu was "insufficiently attractive" for shareholders.

According to The Times newspaper APG said the tie-up did not take into account "the additional risks involved given the state of the UK retail environment, the increase financial leverage of Hammerson following the acquisition and the execution risks".

Any deal with Intu was almost derailed earlier this month when French firm Klepierre made two takeover approaches.

Hammerson rejected both proposals describing them as 'significantly undervaluing' the business.

All of the above is playing havoc with Hammerson's shares. Apparently on hearing the latest news the City reacted badly and share value fell 13 per cent, before rallying slightly.

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