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Bharati revises open offer price for Great Offshore

BS Reporter  |  Mumbai 

Bharati Shipyard has increased the open offer price for Great Offshore by 5.4 per cent to Rs 590 a share from Rs 560 earlier. The open offer for a 20 per cent stake in the offshore drilling company will remain open from December 3 to December 22.

In a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), Bharati said its offer to acquire over 7.8 million shares in Great Offshore would begin on December 3. The open offer was initially scheduled to begin from July 25.

Bharati, which holds a 22.48 per cent stake in Great Offshore, is locked in a battle with ABG Shipyard to gain control of the country’s largest integrated offshore services player. Last week, ABG said its open offer for a 32.12 per cent stake at Rs 520 a share in Great Offshore will also begin on December 3.

Both ABG and Bharati have received Sebi’s approvals to make an open offer for a stake in Great Offshore. ABG Shipyard received an approval to acquire management control. But Bharati can only increase its stake, not gain control.

The bid for Great Offshore began in late May when Bharati acquired the founder’s stake after he failed to repay margin calls on shares, which he had pledged, prompting an open offer under takeover rules. ABG entered the fray in late June with a higher offer, which then led to a series of counter bids by the two

Bharati Shipyard is not allowed to make an offer under Section 12 of the Sebi Act, which allows management control, because its revised offer came in late. The shipbuilder was asked to revise its offer within 14 days of the last bid.

The Great Offshore stock gained 0.62 per cent at Rs 547.50 at close of Tuesday’s trade on the BSE. Bharati Shipyard’s share prices also increased 1.97 per cent to Rs 160.60.

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First Published: Wed, December 02 2009. 00:48 IST