Dutch engineer Arcadis’ takeover of British rival Hyder Consulting has been thwarted by the intervention of the Japanese firm Nippon Koei.Â
Hyder’s board had recommended Arcadis’ $451m offer to its shareholders. At the time, Ivor Catto, the chief executive of Hyder, said: "Although the board believes Hyder has a strong future as an independent business, it considers that this cash offer substantially recognises Hyder’s growth prospects, and provides certainty, in cash, to our shareholders today."
Announcing Hyder’s decision to walk away from the Arcadis offer, Catto said: "The cash offer from Nippon Koei announced today represents a 30p premium to Arcadis’ offer announced on 31 July 2014 and accordingly the Hyder board is now recommending the cash offer from Nippon Koei.Â
"The Hyder board considers that Nippon Koei’s cash offer substantially recognises Hyder’s growth prospects, and provides certainty, in cash, to our shareholders today. The merged group should also provide further opportunities for our highly valued employees and clients."
Shares in Hyder have risen 35% since Arcadis made its offer last Thursday. Arcadis said in a statement it would consider its options and make an announcement in due course, which has led to speculation that it may come back with an improved bid.Â
If a deal between Hyder and Nippon Koei is finalised, it would create a company with a market capitalisation of $863m. The Japanese consultant, which was founded in the 1946, has worked in 135 countries all over the world.
It has said Hyder would operate as a standalone division and that operational changes to the company would be minimal.