Gilbert ready to confirm offer for River and Mercantile
Martin Gilbert’s AssetCo acquisitions vehicle is expected to formally lodge its offer for River and Mercantile this week following the withdrawal of a rival bidder.
Premier Miton dropped out of the race last week, leaving the field open for AssetCo with a clear run to bid for R&M in which it already owns just under 6% of the shares. The Takeover panel gave both firms an extended deadline of 18 January to make their intentions clear.
Mr Gilbert, co-founder of Aberdeen Asset Management and former chief executive of Standard Life Aberdeen, is deputy chairman of R&M and there is some operational overlap.
Last week, Premier Miton chief executive Mike O’Shea confirmed his company was withdrawing its interest and said: “We are most grateful to the board of RMG for their co-operation and assistance as we have assessed the merits of a possible transaction, especially so given the major changes ongoing in their business.”
Both bids were contingent on the sale of R&M’s fiduciary business to Schroders, which has since been successfully concluded.
Mr Gilbert is keen to build AssetCo into a new asset manager through consolidation and last May acquired Edinburgh-based Saracen Fund Managers in a cash and shares deal worth £2.75 million.