Lookers’ cash offer for Reg Vardy trumps Pendragon
So we have finally reached the endgame in the Reg Vardy acquisition, with Lookers ending months of speculation by putting in a bid. Lookers’ recommended cash offer of £492m trumps the £450m bid made by Pendragon months ago. It could also mean CMS Cameron McKenna missing out on a juicy deal to Addleshaw Goddard. As first reported on www.thelawyer.com (18 January), Addleshaws corporate partner Michael Birchall (left) is advising regular client Lookers along with banking partners Amanda Gray and Helen Corner. Meanwhile, Clifford Chance has been brought in to advise debt provider Royal Bank of Scotland, with banking partner James Johnson handling money matters. Cameron, led by corporate partner Mike Jones and finance partner Will Meredith, is having to play a waiting game while its client Pendragon decides whether it is going to increase its bid or pull out.
Slaughters scoops Linklaters to RWE utilities bid
The potential bidding war for Thames Water has gifted Slaughter and May with a surprise instruction to advise the company’s German parent RWE. It is understood that Slaughters fought off fierce competition from Linklaters to advise the German utilities giant on the potential sale or IPO of Thames Water. Linklaters is believed to be acting for US investment bank Goldman Sachs, which has been retained by RWE to oversee the £8bn disposal. According to reports, Guy Hands’ investment vehicle Terra Firma may bid for Thames Water, paving the way for either Lovells or Clifford Chance to scoop a key private-equity instruction. Both firms have historically been linked with Terra Firma. Last year, Lovells’ German practice advised Terra Firma on its purchase of leading German private housing company Viterra from E.ON for approximately €7bn (£4.8bn).