Capital Shopping Centre rejects Simon’s £2.9bn bid

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Capital Shopping Centres (CSC) has rejected Simon Property Group’s £2.9bn takeover bid, claiming it “very substantially undervalues” the company.

CSC said this afternoon that the 425p-a-share indicative offer that Simon lodged this morning was “yet another attempt by Simon to frustrate” the proposed £1.6bn Trafford Centre purchase from Peel Group, which sparked Simon into action three weeks ago.

However, CSC said it was “appropriate” to postpone the shareholder vote on the Trafford Centre purchase, which was due to take place next Monday, “to ensure that shareholders are provided with the necessary information about the proposal to make a clear decision”.

The company said the Simon bid was too low because it owned “an irreplaceable and unrivalled portfolio of regional shopping centres, built up over 30 years, that is impossible to replicate given the barriers to entry in this sector”.

It also criticised Simon’s indicative bid for being conditional on satisfactory due diligence and financing, being subject “surprisingly” to the approval of Simon’s own board and for having no timescale in relation to the announcement of a firm bid.

It said it had begun discussions with the Takeover Panel to establish a latest date and time by which Simon must make a formal offer or confirm that it does not intend to make an offer.

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