Mergers & Acquisitions in March 2016

The final month of the 2015 financial year was completed with a total of 201 deals, announced, completed or pending, involving UK based companies as noted by company deal database zephyr.

One of the most notable deals in the public eye is currently pending with supermarket retailer J Sainsbury PLC looking to acquire leading UK home and general merchandise retailer, Home Retail Group PLC for £1.4 billion. Home Retail Group owns a number of well-known brands and is also the parent company to British catalogue retailer Argos. Sainsbury’s aims to “future-proof” its business through the acquisition. Chief executive Mike Coupe said the deal would allow consumers to shop “whenever and wherever” they wanted. “We can bake a bigger cake and do a better job for our customers than we can do as separate businesses,” he told the BBC.

Sainsbury’s made an offer worth 161.3p a share for Home Retail and the offer represents a 63% premium to Home Retail’s closing share price when the supermarket’s interest was revealed.

Another notable acquisition was that of Bolton Wanderers Football and Athletic Club Ltd for £7.5 million, by former player Dean Holdsworth along with his consortium, Sports Shield, in a joint venture with the Inner Circle Investment Group.

The new chief executive Holdsworth is quoted as saying that it ‘is an emotional decision because it means a lot to me’ and he was ‘seriously honoured to be chief executive’.

Other deals include the acquisition of Skyepharma PLC, by Vectura Group PLC for a massive £441 million, whilst Smart Metering Systems PLC purchased CH4 Gas Utility and Maintenance Services Ltd for £6.9 million.