The sale of William Hill: Drama that led to an unlikely handshake.NOMURA, the Japanese investment bank, emerged from an whirlwind weekend having spent 18 months `fattening' William Hill The name William Hill may refer to the following: People
"Unbelievable" was chief executive John Brown's summing up. No-one would disagree, though others may have more colourful descriptions of the way Hills has been whisked away from public involvement.
The drama began on Thursday, 24 hours before the flotation offer deadline, when Nomura's investment advisers, Warburg Dillon Read Investment bank created by the 1997 merger of S.G. Warburg & Co. and Dillon, Read & Co. Subsequently renamed UBS Warburg and now part of UBS AG, where the Warburg name was eventually dropped. , considered the current situation.
A massive advertising campaign had drawn huge support from private investors. But fund managers for City institutions-courted by Brown and his team in a campaign that ranged from the United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. to Europe and the major cities in Britain-were not showing the same interest.
THE result was that, on Thursday afternoon, Nomura revised its indicative offer to 135p, compared with the opening range of 155p-175p.
The new price immediately attracted the attention of Cinven and CVC Capital Partners CVC Capital Partners is a European private equity firm. CVC was founded in 1981 as the European private equity arm of Citigroup, but after a buyout in 1993 it is owned by its management. In 1999, CVC established CVC Asia Pacific, which is a joint venture with Citigroup. , whose interest had first been aroused-and doused-in December.
After reassuring themselves that the Hills management, led by an old ally in John Brown, was willing to stay aboard, Cinven and CVC See CSC. came back at the equivalent of 150p a share.
As the fund managers attempted to step in, the offer at the revised share price was over-subscribed three times, but Nomura was not interested.
Despite optimistic op·ti·mist
1. One who usually expects a favorable outcome.
2. A believer in philosophical optimism.
op noises on Friday, the flotation was scrapped, contracts were drawn up, and at noon on Saturday a deal was secured on a handshake.
Brown should have been at Ascot for the William Hill Handicap Hurdle. He was absent, and the word was that he was talking to Noun 1. talking to - a lengthy rebuke; "a good lecture was my father's idea of discipline"; "the teacher gave him a talking to"
rebuke, reprehension, reprimand, reproof, reproval - an act or expression of criticism and censure; "he had to his lawyer about his settlement at the revised price of 135p a share.
Little did the punters know.