Fleet News

Battle for CMA control under way

A BATTLE for total control of Central Motor Auctions is under way following the recent surprise £11.9m bid for the company from its smaller rival Independent Car Auctions. It has been revealed that integrated Transport Systems, the holding company for the UK's largest auction company ADT Auctions, has almost doubled its 9.9% stake in CMA.

Following the May 1 announcement that ICA, backed by the world's largest auction company Manheim Auctions, had agreed terms with CMA for the deal, ITS has increased its shareholding to 18.9%.

Shareholders with a 52.4% stake in CMA are 'irrevocably' undertaken to back the scheme, but for ICA to gain 100% control a minimum 75% of shareholders must back the scheme (Fleet News, May 10). The remaining 25% will then be forced to sell their shares.

In a bid to ensure that happens, ICA has increased its offer under the terms of the scheme from 87p a share to 90p a share. But if the scheme fails to attract 75% backing, the offer price reverts to 87p.

The offer period ends on July 5 and whatever happens, ICA backed by Manheim will have a 52.4% stake in the newly merged ICA/CMA group, thereby achieving its objective of controlling its larger rival.

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