April 19, 2017 / 9:29 AM / 9 months ago

CORRECTED-UPDATE 1-UK materials testing firm Exova says gets proposals for cash offers (March 27)

(In March 27 story, corrects paragraph 1 to say Element Materials is a UK-based firm, not Dutch)

April 19 (Reuters) - British materials testing company Exova Group said on Monday it had received proposals for a possible cash offer, including one from UK-based Element Materials Technology.

Exova’s shares rose 14 percent to 254.28 pence in morning trading on the London Stock Exchange, hitting a near three-year high.

The Edinburgh-based company, whose laboratories test the safety and performance of products used in industries ranging from aerospace to pharmaceuticals, said private equity fund PAI Partners, and Jacobs Holding AG, a Swiss investment firm, had also made similar proposals.

“There can be no certainty that any firm offer will be made by any of the possible offerors,” Exova said in a statement.

Exova, which counts Boeing, Airbus Group and Siemens among its customers, said the parties have until April 24 to make a firm offer for the company.

Goldman Sachs is advising Exova on the sale process.

The controlling shareholder, Clayton Dubilier & Rice LLC (CD&R), is poised to put up Exova for sale, the Sunday Times reported last week. bit.ly/2nDZqM2

Exova, which listed its shares in 2014, has struggled with the sharp decline in commodity prices in the recent years, and warned in August that Britain’s vote to leave the European Union had made the company more cautious about investing in its home country. (Reporting by Rahul B in Bengaluru; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri)

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