U.S. News

Terra Firma Extends Offer for EMI; Acceptances Still Below 4%


Private equity firm Terra Firma Capital on Friday again extended the deadline for its 2.4 billion pound ($4.88 billion) takeover bid for EMI Group, which has so far won support from holders of less than 4% of shares.

Shareholders in EMI, home to the Beatles and Coldplay, apparently are holding out for a counterbid from former suitor Warner Music Group .

The offer was extended until July 19 from July 12. It is the second time Terra Firma's takeover vehicle, Maltby Ltd., has extended its offer. It said that it has received acceptances for around 3.82% of EMI's issued share capital under its offer.

The EMI board recommended in May that its shareholders accept the Terra Firma offer.

Warner said last month that it was considering making another offer to purchase EMI. Warner Music and EMI have been in on-and-off merger discussions over the past seven years, but repeated talks have been stymied on several occasions by regulatory uncertainty and the inability to agree on a price.

In the latest round, Warner offered $4.2 billion in March, but EMI rejected the bid and accepted the Terra Firma offer, led by financier Guy Hands, two months later.

EMI said that Terra Firma's offer, valuing EMI at 265 pence ($5.38) a share, was the best among a number of proposals it received.

EMI shares rose sharply after Terra Firma's offer, but have since slipped back as Warner has failed to start a bidding war. They closed at 268.75 pence ($5.46), just above the offer price, on Thursday.