(Updates March 3 story to add reason for CFO's departure from
By Lawrence White and Anjuli Davies
LONDON, March 3 British bank Shawbrook Group Plc
said on Friday it has received a joint offer from two
private equity firms to buy the lender less than two years since
it went public, in a deal worth 825 million pounds ($1 billion).
Pollen Street Capital, which already owns 38.9 percent of
Shawbrook, together with BC Partners have offered shareholders
330 pence per ordinary share in cash and any final dividend due
for 2016, the bank said in a statement.
The shares jumped 18 percent to 316.5 pence on Friday.
The offer is pitched at a 22 percent premium to Thursday's
closing share price.
Britain's so-called challenger banks have been increasingly
seen as ripe for takeovers in recent months, bankers who advise
on mergers and acquisitions have said, as a prolonged period of
low interest rates has squeezed earnings and the pound's fall
has made them cheaper for foreign buyers.
Co-Operative Bank, rescued from the brink of collapse by a
group of hedge funds in 2013, put itself up for sale last month
after struggling to meet regulatory capital requirements.
Shawbrook, which was founded in 2011, listed in April 2015
at 290 pence a share but has been trading below that price in
In June last year it booked an additional impairment charge
due to some irregularities in its asset finance business,
sending its share price to a record low.
"We believe that Shawbrook continues to suffer an
unwarranted discount in the aftermath of the 9 million pound
impairment charge taken by its asset finance business in Q2
2016," Ian Gordon, analyst at Investec wrote in February.
It has also seen several changes in its senior management.
Chief Financial Officer Tom Wood resigned last June, with
Dylan Minto taking over the role. Wood said his departure was
because he wanted to spend more time with his family.
In 2015 Richard Pyman stood down as the bank's CEO due to
illness, and was replaced by Steve Pateman.
"In its short history as a listed company, Shawbrook has
suffered from a disproportionate amount of ‘management churn,"
The bank, with a 75 percent exposure to small and medium
sized firms (SMEs) lending, said in November that demand from
SMEs was lower than the previous year but that it had seen
continued demand for property finance and consumer
Shawbrook is being advised by Goldman Sachs and is
due to report full-year results on March 7.
($1 = 0.8167 pounds)
(Additional reporting By Andrew MacAskill; Editing by Rachel