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Shares in Bovis rose as much as 9.5 per cent on Monday morning after the company confirmed it is in talks over a merger with Galliford Try, while rival Redrow is keen to make another offer.

The company has been the subject of takeover speculation in recent months after a string of problems culminated in the loss of its chief executive and a drop in full-year profits.

At publication time shares in Bovis were up 8 per cent to 893p, their highest level since September. That puts them above the total price per share offered by both Galliford and Redrow in their initial offers.

Bovis pointed to its undevalued share price as part of its reason to reject Redrow’s cash and share offer, noting that it didn’t want shareholders to “crystallise value at the current Bovis valuation”.

Shares in Galliford and Redrow rose 0.6 per cent and 0.9 per cent respectively, with the wider FTSE 250 up 0.31 per cent.

Analysts at Liberum described the offers as “opportunistic” but “attractive” at current levels. However, they added that “neither proposer may want to push up the value much from here as land is readily available in the open market at good margins”.

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