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Regus ‘rejects £3bn bid from Blackstone’

Fri: Shares in office retail company Regus rose 3% after a report that it could be the subject of a bid from a private equity firm.

Regus founder and chief executive Mark Dixon is said to have knocked back a £3 billion approach from Blackstone, but was open to an increased offer worth around £4bn.

Dixon owns almost a third of the company and collected £73.5m in May by selling 30m shares at 245p each.

Regus is in rude health after reporting a 155% rise in interim pre-tax profits to £79.1m on a 16% rise in revenues to £937m.

There was a surprise dip for construction in July after the biggest annual fall in house-building in more than two years.

Construction output fell by 1% on the month, dragging down companies in the sector.  Taylor Wimpey fell 0.8%, as did real estate firm British Land, down 1.7%.

The FTSE 100 fell back as a Bank of England policymaker said the bank may need to raise interest rates sooner.
Kristin Forbes, an external member of the Monetary Policy Committee, said the Bank might have to tighten policy if the pound’s rally over the past two years has less impact on inflation than currently estimated.

“Sterling’s recent appreciation could create less drag on import prices and inflation than we might have expected if the levels of pass-through seen after the crisis persisted,” Forbes said in a speech in Cardiff. “If this plays out, monetary policy would need to be tightened sooner than based on the older models.”

The FTSE 100 closed 0.6% lower at 6,117.76 points.

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