Mystery bid pulls PMP shares out of a trough
THE share price of the printing and direct marketing company PMP swung this week from a record low - prompted by a profit downgrade - to a six-month high, after the struggling printing house announced it had received a takeover offer.
THE share price of the printing and direct marketing company PMP swung this week from a record low - prompted by a profit downgrade - to a six-month high, after the struggling printing house announced it had received a takeover offer.The chairman, Ian Fraser, told the stock exchange yesterday the board had received "a highly conditional non-binding indicative offer for the purchase of PMP in a range between 68? to 78?".The offer values the company at up to $252 million, or triple the 25? a share low PMP was trading at this week after announcing a substantial profit downgrade on Tuesday.The shares finished 37? higher at 62?.Mr Fraser would not say if it was a trade buyer or private equity, nor give any details of the structure of the offer. Industry figures were split on the likely identity of the bidder."The directors are considering the approach and will keep the market informed of developments," Mr Fraser said in the statement.The printing sector has been struggling with overcapacity and the general advertising slowdown, and PMP warned this week it was facing "a combination of structural issues, economic drivers and deferral of advertising spend into the first quarter of fiscal 2013".An industry source said the high price range suggested an offshore industry buyer was more likely.Peter Hall, the chairman of Hunter Hall, one of PMP's largest shareholders, said the sector was ripe for consolidation.A new owner could use PMP to buy other assets around the country, he said.Five years ago, the PMP board rejected a share offer of between $1.95 and $2.15 from unidentified private equity firms.