28 December 2017 – Eje Prime
Colonial is getting closer to the finishing line in its race to create a real estate giant. Today, Spain’s National Securities and Exchange Commission (CNMV) approved the takeover bid launched by the real estate group for the Socimi Axiare on 13 November 2017; given its size, the potential deal has had the sector on tenterhooks for the last month and a half.
The market supervisor has valued the operation to purchase the 71% of the share capital in the Madrid-based company that Colonial does not control yet at €1.033 billion. If the transaction goes ahead, the Socimi will sell non-strategic assets worth around €300 million, as Eje Prime revealed.
Through this merger, the Socimi led by Pere Viñolas, one of the real estate sector’s stars this year, is seeking to generate a giant with almost €10 billion in assets, which would threaten the position of leadership in the market currently held by Merlin.
According to the details of the takeover offer accepted by the CNMV, Colonial will pay €18.36 for each one of Axiare’s 56.30 million shares. In theory, the real estate company offered the firm led by Luis López de Herrera-Oria a payment of €18.50 per share, to which the Socimi responded by calling the operation “hostile”. Nevertheless, the distribution of Axiare’s dividend has led to a reduction in that final offer, after Colonial warned the Socimi that this fact would change the conditions of the takeover bid.
Following the approval of the stock exchange supervisor, and with CaixaBank’s bank guarantee at the ready, the period will open on Friday (29 December) for Axiare’s shareholders to take a stance, as well as for the issue of a report about the operation by the target Socimi’s Board of Directors. This period to accept the takeover bid will run from 29 December until 29 January, both inclusive. Colonial needs the support of 21.21% of the shareholders, in addition to the 28.7% stake that it already controls, which would allow the company led by Viñolas to exceed the 50% threshold in terms of its stake in the rival company.
Original story: Eje Prime
Translation: Carmel Drake