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UK's River and Mercantile rejects new approach for pensions business

By Reuters

– British fund manager River and Mercantile Group (R&M) said on Wednesday it had rejected an informal takeover approach from a blank-check company for its pensions business that it had agreed to sell to Schroders.

Special-purpose acquisition company Disruptive Capital Acquisition Company (DCAC) said earlier in the day it had proposed to buy R&M’s pensions business at a “higher value” than Schroders’s 230 million pounds ($307 million) offer.

R&M had in October agreed to sell to Schroders the business that manages assets worth 42 billion pounds and serves more than 100 clients, mainly trustees of pension schemes.

The move by R&M, itself a takeover target, was aimed at focusing on its mainstay asset management business.

R&M said on Wednesday it continued to back Schroders’ offer and that it saw “material uncertainty” around the value and form of DCAC‘s proposal, as well as the availability and sources of financing.

Schroders and DCAC did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

R&M said last week it had received preliminary approaches for a possible buyout from rivals Premier Miton Group and AssetCo.

Any potential deal was conditional on R&M completing the sale of its pensions business, it had said.

($1 = 0.7500 pounds)