Bid battle breaks out over Dee Valley

A bidding war for Dee Valley Water has erupted between Severn Trent Water and infrastructure investment manager Ancala Fornia. Severn Trent, last Thursday, made the most recent offer of £84m – a 7% hike on the previous offer – which was recommended by Dee Valley’s board last Thursday.

The battle for the water only company began more than a week ago when Severn Trent announced it had agreed a £78.5m offer – seemingly gazumping Ancala’s £71.3m offer tabled last October. Ancala last Tuesday upped its offer to top Severn Trent’s by 1p a share and Severn Trent responded the following day with its current £84m bid.

Newspapers in the Dee Valley region have reported local MPs as being concerned that the Severn Trent deal would result in job losses. Ancala has said its offer would preserve Dee Valley as “run by staff situated locally within the community who will be incentivised to deliver excellent customer service to that community”.

In its statement accompanying its latest revised offer Severn Trent said: “Severn Trent will bring its expertise and considerable financial strength to support the business, its customers, employees and pensioners. Severn Trent’s investment grade debt rating will provide a solid foundation for the business.”