Exova, the lab testing specialist, has accepted a £620.3m cash offer from Element Materials Technology Group, the companies said in a joint statement on Wednesday.

Shareholders will be paid a price of 240 pence per share. They will also receive a final dividend for the period to December 31st, 2016 of 2.35 pence per Exova share, which is expected to be paid on 9 June 2017.

Shares in Exova had climbed roughly 39 per cent over the past year to its original 220 pence pricing amid reports that its majority shareholder, Clayton Dubilier & Rice, the buyout group, would put it up for sale.

Element, which is majority owned by BEV, the latest fund of
Bridgepoint and was acquired by BEV in March last year, said the acquisition will help boost Exova’s presence in the aerospace, oil and gas sectors, where the lab testing specialist has recently struggled.

Allister Langlands, chairman of Exova, said:

This represents a good outcome for shareholders and the combination of Exova and Element creates a global leader in the testing market.

HSBC is acting as an advisor and providing financing for Element and Bridgepoint.

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