• Germany's news in English

Outbid, GfK calls off approach for British rival

The Local · 27 Aug 2008, 11:15

Published: 27 Aug 2008 11:15 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Nuremberg-based GfK said it was unable to line up financiers that would allow it to trump WPP’s £1.1billion (€1.4 billion) offer.

“The management board, after careful consideration, has concluded that the terms of the financing available did not enable a sufficiently compelling alternative cash offer to be made for TNS that was also economically in the best interests of the GfK shareholders,” the company said.

GfK and TNS in April proposed a null-premium merger that would have given control of GfK to TNS and created the world’s No. 2 market research company behind Nielsen. But that announcement sparked WPP, run by celebrity executive Martin Sorrell, to launch a cash and share counter offer for TNS.

GfK then began scrambling to find a deep-pocketed partner to back an all-cash approach. Although GfK refused to name potential financiers, German press reports said it approached private equity group Apax Partners and the heirs to the Tchibo coffee fortune.

TNS Tuesday reiterated its rejection of the WPP offer, noting “previous acquisitions in the sector have valued target companies above WPP’s valuation of TNS.”

Investors approved of GfK’s decision – the shares traded 4.7 percent higher in late morning Frankfurt trade at €24.31. However, with the prospect of a bid battle off the table, TNS shares fell 1.8 percent to 264.00 pence in London. WPP was off 1.1 percent at 501 pence.

Story continues below…

GfK’s proposed bid was also controversial among members of the market research association that owns a majority of the company. Some members feared the group would lose its German voice was others fretted at the possibility of job losses in the southern German state of Bavaria, where GfK is based.

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Today's headlines
Dad who auctioned baby on eBay restricted from seeing child
Photo: DPA.

A German court ruled on Thursday that a man who put his one-month-old baby up for sale on the online auction platform eBay should only be allowed contact with the child under supervision.

Portugal's ruling party calls German minister 'pyromaniac'
Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble. Photo: DPA.

The head of Portugal's ruling Socialists called German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble a "pyromaniac" on Thursday after he criticized Lisbon for reversing course on austerity.

These are Germany's top ten universities
The new library of Freiburg University. Photo: Jörgens.mi / Wikimedia Commons

These are the best universities in all of Germany - at least according to one ranking.

Introducing Swabians - 'the Scots of Germany'
Photo: DPA

These Southern Germans have quite a reputation in the rest of the country.

Woman sues dentist over job rejection for headscarf
Photo: DPA

A dentist in Stuttgart is being taken to court by a woman whom he rejected for a job as his assistant on the basis that she wears a Muslim headscarf.

Isis suspect charged with scouting Berlin attack sites
Photo: DPA

German federal prosecutors said Thursday they had brought charges against a 19-year-old Syrian man accused of having scouted targets in Berlin for a potential attack by the Isis terror group.

Berlin Holocaust memorial could not be built now: creator
The Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, in Berlin. Photo: DPA.

The architect of the Berlin Holocaust memorial has said that, if he tried to build the monument again today, it would not be possible due to rising xenophobia and anti-Semitism in Germany and the United States.

'Liberal' Germany stopping Europe's 'slide into barbarism'
Ian Kershaw. Photo: DPA

Europe is not slipping into the same dark tunnel of hate and nationalism that it did in the 1930s - mainly thanks to Germany - one of the continent's leading historians has said.

Eurowings strike to hit 40,000 passengers
Travelers impacted by the strike on Thursday wait at Cologne Bonn airport. Photo: DPA.

The day-long strike by a Eurowings cabin crew union is expected to impact some 40,000 passengers on Thursday as hundreds of flights have been cancelled.

Deutsche Bank reports surprise quarter billion profit
Photo: DPA

Troubled German lender Deutsche Bank reported Thursday a surprise €256-million profit in the third quarter, compared with a loss of more than six billion in the same period last year.

10 German clichés that foreigners get very wrong
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
10 ways German completely messes up your English
Germany's 10 most weird and wonderful landmarks
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd