Brookfield Asset Management has teamed up with the founders of Multiplex to make a bid for the A$4bn (£1.6bn) property and construction company

Shares in Multiplex rose 5.5 % to A$4.80 on the Sydney Stock Exchange today after the approach by Brookfield and the Roberts family, which has 25.6% of Multiplex. The approach could lead to an offer for the whole company, Multiplex said.

No value for any bid was given, but analysts suggested around A$5 a share might be the most offered for Multiplex, which has a market capitalisation of A$4bn.

The proposal is an all-cash offer, said Brookfield, which is being advised by Citigroup.

Multiplex founder John Roberts died in June after establishing the company in 1962. Chief executive Andrew Roberts, his brother Tim Roberts and sister Denby Macgregor have taken a leave of absence from their executive roles.

Canadian company Brookfield, formerly known as Brascan, is listed on the New York and Toronto stock exchanges and is an asset management specialist in the property, power and infrastructure sectors. It is best known in the UK for its bidding war in 2004 with Morgan Stanley-led consortium Songbird to buy the £1.7bn Canary Wharf Group.

Last month it swooped at the 11th hour to buy US mega-mall developer REIT Mills Corporation. It agreed to pay $1.35bn (£685m) in cash for the troubled company.