Bourne End Properties had long been a suspect for bowing to the sector's trend for going private when the Merrill Lynch-led consortium BEP Acquisitions made its £45m bid in December. Last June, when Bourne End was trading at a 33 per cent discount to net asset value, it announced plans to liquidate the company and return cash to shareholders over a 12 to 18-month period, unless a bid was made for the entire portfolio or company. Merrill Lynch snapped i

t up along with consortium member Greenwich Group and Wilshire. Shareholders can thus obtain share value earlier. Taylor Joynson Garret won the property and corporate adviser role to the acquiror through its Merrill Lynch connections, and carried out all property due diligence on assets in excess of £160m within a two-week period. Bourne End's senior debt will be taken over by Nationwide Building Society from the Anglo Irish Bank Corporation. Taylor Johnson Garrett also advised BEP on the proposed £140m refinancing, while Dechert advised Nationwide. However, there is no doubt Bourne End will not be the last quoted property company to turn its back on the stock market.