London-listed insurer Old Mutual has reiterated its desire and confidence that it will attain its goal of acquire 90% of Scandinavian insurance provider Skandia. However, the company has suggested that it might go ahead with as little as a minimum majority share.
Outwardly, South African originated Old Mutual has continued to show a front of utter confidence that it will attain the 90% share ownership in Skandia that it set as its goal. However, continued fierce opposition to its take over move from the majority of Skandia’s board and alleged irregularities over Old Mutual bid documents have increase the speculation that the South African insurer may not win over as many shareholders at it earlier hoped.
As a result, Old Mutual’s chief executive Jim Sutcliffe said he is not ruling out completing the bid for Skandia having attained only 51% or 66% of shares. The revelation came as Sutcliffe officially launched Old Mutual’s bid of $6 billion. The offer period starts on October 17 and ends November 21.
If Old Mutual was to acquire 90% of Skandia’s share it would be able to force the rest to sell, thus giving it full ownership of the Nordic insurer. However, at the other end of the potential scale, 51% would only give the London-headquartered company control of Skandia’s board, while almost half the company and a significant portion of the board would remain out of its control.