Oxford Instruments makes $254 million bid proposal for Andor

LONDON Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:39am GMT

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LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's Oxford Instruments, has made a bid proposal of around 159 million pounds ($254 million) for Andor Technology in an announcement which the target company described as "premature" and "unhelpful" given ongoing talks.

Oxford Instruments, which designs and manufactures tools for industry and research, said on Tuesday it planned to offer 500 pence a share in cash for Andor to gain its expertise in scientific digital cameras.

That is around 25 percent above Andor's closing share price on Monday and boosted shares in both companies.

However, Oxford Instruments reserved the right to make an offer on less favourable terms, and Andor said there was too much uncertainty for it to consider the bid properly - although it was willing to continue talks in an effort to reach a deal.

"The Board of Andor is disappointed that, having only made the indicative proposal on 8 November, Oxford Instruments has chosen to make today's announcement which the Board of Andor considers to be premature and unhelpful in light of ongoing discussions," Andor said.

At 0855 GMT, Andor shares were up 23.25 percent at 485 pence, their highest level since June 2012, while Oxford Instrument's were 10.5 percent higher at 1,354 pence.

Andor said that since it first received an indicative cash offer on July 9 from Oxford Instruments, the two had cooperated and met multiple times.

Under UK takeover rules, Oxford Instruments has until 1700 GMT on December 10 to make a firm offer or walk away.

(Reporting by Rhys Jones and Brenda Goh; editing by Keith Weir and Mark Potter)

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