Invensys closer to takeover goal

News of a possible sale emerged yesterday when Dutch bank ING agreed to tender its 5.9% stake in Baan.

‘ING is of the opinion that the bid made by Invensys is justifiable from a valuation point of view,’ said a company spokesman.

Invensys’ bid worth Euro760m (£472m) is based on the condition that it receives no less than 95% of Baan shares. However, it is understood the company will accept marginally less.

ING’s decision as the last big shareholder means that Baan now has until 25th July to persuade the remaining individual shareholders to sell. Invensys currently holds a 58% stake.

The Dutch bank had considered holding on to its stake because it stood to gain more for tax reasons if Baan went bankrupt.

Baan’s work council is in favour of the takeover by Invensys despite speculation that more than 1,000 IT jobs would go.

Baan has consistently lost money since the end of 1998, falling below original estimations with a loss of $311m in 1999.

If the deal goes ahead, Invensys is reported as wanting to incorporate the revamped Baan business in its new Systems and Software division.

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