Minerva suffered a drop in net asset value of almost 20% over the past six months as conditions in the property market deteriorated rapidly. Financial Times, The Times

The company, which has been at the centre of takeover speculation for several months, reported a loss after tax of £90.7m in the six months to December 31, from a profit of £14.1m in the same period last year.

Minerva said net asset value per share dropped to 266p, reflecting trading properties at cost, down from 327.9p in June.

The company’s investment property decreased 14.4% in value, although this is adjusted to 1.8% if valuation movement of trading properties was taken into account.