A plan to acquire Singapore's United Engineers Ltd (>> United Engineers Limited) by Yanlord Land Group (>> Yanlord Land Group Limited) and Perennial Real Estate Holdings (>> Perennial Real Estate Holdings Limited) that valued the century-old property group and a stake in a subsidiary at $1.4 billion has failed on low shareholder acceptance.
The consortium agreed in July to buy a one-third stake in United Engineers owned by Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp (>> Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp. Limited) and its group companies at S$2.6 per share, triggering a mandatory offer for the remaining shares - a deal that was set to be one of the biggest property takeovers in Singapore in recent years.
After the S$1.83 billion ($1.4 billion) offer was announced below market price at the time, Singapore property firm Oxley Holdings (>> Oxley Holdings Ltd) swooped in and accumulated a stake of more than 14 percent in the target company from the open market at above S$2.6 per share.
The offer was extended twice but in the end it only received shareholder acceptances representing just 1.4 percent of United Engineers' ordinary shares, Yanlord, a China-based real estate developer and Singapore's Perennial said in a joint statement late on Tuesday.
On Wednesday, United Engineers' shares fell 1.5 percent to S$2.7.
The Yanlord-led group, however, did complete a purchase of OCBC and its group firms' roughly one-third stakes in United Engineers and its property firm WBL Corp.
Separately, United Engineers said its chairman, group managing director and directors had resigned and it had made new appointments, but did not elaborate on the reasons.
United Engineers' property businesses are located mainly in Singapore and China. Yanlord and Perennial also mainly own and manage sizeable portfolios in the same countries.
($1 = 1.3461 Singapore dollars)
(Reporting by Anshuman Daga in Singapore; Additional reporting by Ambar Warrick in Bengaluru; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)
By Anshuman Daga