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Link accepts revised takeover bid from Dye & Durham

The board of Link Administration Holdings (ASX: LNK) has unanimously recommended a revised bid from international cloud-based software and tech provider Dye & Durham.

user iconJon Bragg 21 July 2022 Big Law
Link accepts revised takeover bid from Dye & Durham
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Editor’s note: This story first appeared on Lawyers Weekly’s sister brand, Investor Daily.

Link Administration Holdings has confirmed it has accepted a revised takeover bid from Dye & Durham of $4.81 per share.

In a statement to the ASX on Thursday morning (21 July 2022), Link said it had agreed to amend the scheme implementation deed signed between the two companies in December last year, under which Dye & Durham had originally offered $5.50 per share.

 
 

“The Link Group board unanimously recommends that Link Group shareholders vote in favour of the revised scheme in absence of a superior proposal and subject to the independent expert concluding and continuing to conclude that the revised scheme is fair and reasonable and in the best interests of Link Group shareholders,” the firm said.

Link said that all of its directors intend to vote in favour of the revised scheme at the scheme meeting, which is now due to occur in mid-August after previously being postponed.

Dye & Durham reduced its bid to $4.30 per share last month to reflect an undertaking the firm was considering providing to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) in order to obtain its approval, along with “the current state of the financial markets and values of both the Link Group and the PEXA shares”.

The firm then upped its bid to $4.57 per share after the earlier offer was rejected; however, Link subsequently declared that it was unable to recommend the second revised bid.

In addition to the base scheme consideration of $4.81 per share, Link shareholders would also be entitled to receive up to 13¢ per share if Dye & Durham reaches an agreement to sell Link’s banking and credit management (BCM) business.

“Under the revised scheme, Dye & Durham remains obligated to use its best endeavours to pursue the sale of the BCM business for a period that continues to 12 months after the implementation of the revised scheme,” Link said.

“Link Group notes that it has been advised by Dye & Durham that it will shortly appoint financial advisers to sell Link Group’s BCM business and will commence this process immediately following implementation of the revised scheme.”

The revised scheme remains subject to court and regulatory approvals and other customary conditions in addition to approval from Link shareholders.

The ACCC raised significant preliminary competition concerns about the proposed acquisition in a statement of issues last month.

The regulator’s competition concerns were in relation to Link’s 42.77 per cent shareholding in PEXA, which Dye & Durham would gain if the takeover goes ahead.

“The proposed acquisition would align PEXA, a near monopoly provider of electronic lodgment network services, with D&D, a significant supplier of software to lawyers and conveyancers, significantly increasing vertical integration in this industry,” the ACCC said.