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Intu Properties says considering bid from billionaire John Whittaker's consortium

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By Reuters

(Reuters) – Retail property developer Intu Properties <INTUP.L> confirmed on Friday it was considering a 215 pence per share preliminary takeover offer from a consortium formed by British billionaire John Whittaker and Saudi Arabian and Canadian investors.

The offer values the FTSE 250 firm at 2.91 billion pounds and represents a 21 percent premium to the stock’s closing price on Thursday.

The consortium formed by Whittaker, Saudi Arabia’s Olayan and Canadian property investor Brookfield Asset Management <BAMa.TO> has been granted access to company documents to conduct due diligence with a view to making a firm offer, the company said.

The offer comes months after Intu CEO stepped down in July and it swung to a loss and warned of lower growth in rental income as it grapples with a downturn in Britain’s bricks-and-mortar retail sector.

The consortium initially offered 205 pence per Intu share on Oct. 11, which was raised to 215 pence six days later, the company said.

The consideration will be reduced by any dividends or other distributions declared, payable or paid by Intu prior to completion.

(Reporting by Shashwat Awasthi in Bengaluru; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri)