GAM starts funding talks with investors after Liontrust bid fails

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Shareholders in struggling Swiss asset supervisor GAM have rejected a takeover provide from UK rival Liontrust, forcing it to enter discussions with an activist investor group because it tries to remain afloat.

Some 33.5 per cent of GAM shareholders voted for the takeover, which the corporate had beforehand stated was important “to proceed as a going concern”.

The collapse of the deal calls into query the way forward for GAM: its share worth has crashed 95 per cent since 2018 after its involvement within the Greensill scandal led to a tremendous by regulators and the removing of one in every of its star managers.

GAM stated it was now in talks with the activist group — which is led by French telecoms billionaire Xavier Niel and consists of wealth administration firm Bruellan — specializing in short-term bridge financing that the group had beforehand provided.

A part of the Liontrust provide was a £17.8mn mortgage to GAM, half of which has already been drawn down. The mortgage was contingent on the takeover going via, and can now be terminated on the finish of the 12 months.

The activist group — which says it owns 9.6 per cent of GAM shares — stated the Liontrust proposal considerably undervalued the corporate and the potential worth {that a} turnaround might generate for shareholders. They’ve provided to purchase 17.5 per cent of the corporate at SFr0.55 a share.

Liontrust’s provide was 0.06 of its personal shares for every share in GAM, which closed yesterday at SFr0.45 ($0.51).

GAM’s board had beforehand stated the Liontrust provide was the “solely viable choice” for the group.

David Jacob, chair of GAM, stated: “The GAM board acknowledges that almost all of our shareholders haven’t discovered the Liontrust provide compelling. I’m happy that we have now entered constructive and productive discussions with [the activist group] and that these discussions proceed at velocity.”

John Ions, chief govt of Liontrust stated: “We’re upset we didn’t win the help of nearly all of GAM’s shareholders and are grateful to these . . . shareholders who did again our provide.”

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