EGIS minority buy out – What’s next ?

Only 4 months after I bought EGIS for the portfolio, majority owner Servier has offered (for me totally unexpected) 28.000 HUF per share to minority shareholders.

This is roughly a 40% gain in 4 months, so quite oK, although in my opinion, the stock should be worth more especially compared to peers. The current offer is around 8.3 x 2013 earnings (ex net cash) and 1.1 x book value.

That’s what I wrote back then:

I think one doesn’t need to be to sophisticated here. A decent company like EGIS with a solid, non cyclical business should not trade at a P/E of 5 and P/B of 0.8. A fair price in my opinion, taking into account some issues from above should be a P/E of 10 or 1.5 times book, which would be still significantly below western peer companies.

Now the problem is the following: Acceppt the offer (and/or sell) or wait for a better offer ?

In most German cases I had so far, the first offer was ususally followed by a better offer and/or much higher stock prices, such as AIRE KgAA and Draegerwerke Genußschein.

In the EGIS case, Servier communicated the following:

– there will be no second offer
– they will ask the AGM to delist the company after the offer is settled

After googling a little bit, I found this from Lawfirm Weil (written in 2005):

In general, a simple majority of the votes is required to adopt a decision at a shareholders’ meeting. However, certain fundamental decisions (eg changes to the charter, merger or winding-up of the company, listing/delisting of shares) require a three-quarters majority of the votes. The charter may also impose supermajority voting requirements for decisions which, by law, could be adopted by a simple majority.

A 75% majority of votes is most likely relatively easy to achieve, unless an activist fund steps in and buys a large anough stake. I don’t have any clue how likely that is and how chances are in Hungarian courts.

So all in all, I guess the best will be to accept the offer and try to find another place to invest in. Somehow the number of cheap shares seem to become smaller and smaller….

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