Three Delta has returned to its sovereign fund backer the Qatari Investment Authority for £500 million ($1 billion; €713 million) of extra equity in its bid for Sainsbury’s, according to a statement jointly issued by the board of the UK supermarket and the investment firm.
The bid has a deadline of 5pm on 8 November, the Takeover Panel Executive has ruled. The move was at the request of Three Delta’s special purpose acquisition vehicle Delta Two and Sainsbury’s.
If the bid lapses Delta Two cannot make another bid for Sainsbury’s for six months, according to the takeover panel’s rules
The Delta Two bid is nearing completion in its talks with the company’s pension trustees, several city sources said.
It is understood Delta Two has completed due diligence to its satisfaction and will make a bid if its Qatari backers accept the changed capital structure of the bid to an equity component of £5.35 billion and £9.6 billion debt. The firm has changed the £6.00 per share bid’s capital structure although it has not changed the value of the offer. The extra equity is needed because of talks with the pension trustees and turbulent market conditions.
The Sainsbury’s family with an 18 percent stake have made persistently clear that they would oppose any bid that does not have the backing of the pension scheme. However, its spokesman declined to comment about its stance towards the bid.
The pension trustees, Delta Two and UK supermarket Sainsbury’s declined to comment.