The board of challenger bank Shawbrook has accepted defeat in its bid to remain independent, recommending that its remaining shareholders accept a private equity buyout despite maintaining that the offer “undervalues” the company.
Pollen Street Capital and BC Partners have been trying to buy Shawbrook, which specialises in lending to small and midsized business, since January.
The company has repeatedly rebuffed the consortium’s advances, but the bidders announced yesterday that they had won acceptances from a total of 75.6 per cent of Shawbrook’s shareholders with an offer of 340p a share.
In a statement on Tuesday, Shawbrook said its independent directors “continue to believe that the final offer undervalues Shawbrook and its prospects”.
However, they said that Marlin Bidco – the vehicle being used for the purchase – “will have obtained a very significant level of control of Shawbrook” which would allow it to delist the company from the London Stock Exchange. That would leave the remaining shareholders with “a minority interest in an unlisted company” which would “significantly reduce the liquidity of Shawbrook shares”. As a result, they said they “now recommend that shareholders accept the final offer”.