Spire Healthcare

Ramsay Health Care’s attempted acquisition of independent UK hospital group Spire Healthcare was thwarted on 19 July when votes at the general meeting and the court meeting fell below the 75% minimum threshold needed for the takeover offer to proceed (at 69.88% and 72.07% respectively.

Earlier, Ramsay Health Care had upped its offer for Spire to 250p from its original offer of 240p – and the Spire board unanimously recommended it to the shareholders.

The increased final offer represented a 30% premium to the share price on the day prior to the announcement of the initial offer (26 May) and a 41% premium to the three-month average share price prior to the announcement of the initial offer.

Sir Ian Cheshire, chairman of Spire, said: “We respect the decision of our shareholders and will now continue to execute our strategy to deliver growth and create greater value through supporting private patients and the NHS. Throughout our ongoing engagement with shareholders, feedback has been overwhelmingly positive towards the long-term strategy and our strong management team. We remain confident in the company’s long-term fundamentals and are well positioned for success as a standalone business.

“Whilst the majority of shareholders voted in favour of the scheme, the result is clear. As a board, we are committed to representing the interests of our shareholders and have fulfilled our duty to present the proposed transaction for their consideration, given its value and structure.

Justin Ash, chief executive of Spire, added: “Spire had strong prospects as a standalone business before the offer from Ramsay and that remains the case today. Our strategy has, and will continue to, prioritise investment in patient safety and quality of care in order to deliver sustainable long-term growth; this strategy has enjoyed strong shareholder support and we have remained focused on its execution throughout the offer period.

“Led by our purpose, to make a positive difference to patients’ lives through outstanding personalised care, our colleagues have demonstrated outstanding commitment to patients, building admissions and addressing the treatment backlog throughout the pandemic and the transaction. The board and management team are deeply grateful to all of them for their continued dedication.”

Date published: July 20, 2021

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