Hammerson's mixed-use Victoria Quarter in Leeds in the UK. Picture: 123RF
Hammerson's mixed-use Victoria Quarter in Leeds in the UK. Picture: 123RF

Hammerson’s share price fell as much as 13% to R77.04 on the JSE on Friday morning, on the news that French suitor Klépierre had dropped its bid.

"Klépierre confirms that on April 9, Jean-Marc Jestin, the chairman of the executive board of Klépierre, met with the chairman of the board of directors of Hammerson, David Tyler, and made an increased proposal to Hammerson on a standalone basis of £6.35 per Hammerson share for the entire issued and to be issued share capital of Hammerson," Klépierre’s statement said.

"The increased proposal represents a premium of 45% to Hammerson’s undisturbed share price of 437.10p per Hammerson share on March 16.

"The board of Hammerson did not provide any meaningful engagement with respect to the increased proposal and, after careful consideration, Klépierre has concluded that it does not intend to make an offer for Hammerson pursuant to Rule 2.7 of the City Code on Takeovers and Mergers."

UK-based Hammerson announced on April 11 that Klépierre had increased a £6.15 per share offer, announced on March 19, to £6.35 per share. Klépierre’s offer was half cash and half shares.

"The proposal from Klépierre is wholly inadequate and entirely opportunistic. It is a calculated attempt to exploit the disconnect between our recent share price performance and the inherent value of our unique and irreplaceable portfolio which is delivering record results," Tyler said in March.

"Klépierre is asking our shareholders to accept a price for their Hammerson shares which is not only at a significant discount to their book value but includes a large element of paper in a company which in our view has a lower-quality portfolio and lower growth prospects.

"The Hammerson board sees absolutely no merit in Klépierre’s proposal and has unanimously rejected it. The board strongly advises shareholders to take no action."

Hammerson, which has a market capitalisation of R63bn, is in negotiations to merge with Intu, which has a market cap of R50bn.

Tyler said in March that Hammerson remained committed to this deal, which Klépierre’s acquisition could have thwarted.