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Cambria £82.5m takeover bid exceeds 75% required acceptance

Mark Lavery, chief executive of Cambria Motors

Cambria Automobiles’ £82.5 million takeover by the car retail group’s chief executive Mark Lavery has now exceeded the required 75% acceptance rate needed to succeed.

A statement issued by the AM100 PLC via the London Stock Exchange this morning (September 13) confirmed that the owners of 75.99% of group shares have now agreed to the buyout offer which is set to return the business into private ownership.

At the same time, the group announced a further extension to the deadline to allow other shareholders to accept the 82.5p-per-share offer made by Lavery’s Bidco takeover business to 1pm tomorrow (September 14).

Cambria’s latest statement on the progress of Lavery’s takeover bid revealed that valid acceptances in respect of shares representing 35.99% of the car retail group’s capital had now been received.

Lavery and his wife Nicola Lavery had already agreed to contribute their 40% interest in Cambria as part of the offer agreement.

Today’s statement added: "The attention of Cambria shareholders is drawn to the intentions of Bidco set out in the Offer Document regarding the re-registration of Cambria as a private company and the cancellation of admission of Cambria shares to trading on AIM following the Offer becoming or being declared unconditional in all respects.

“Bidco intends that the London Stock Exchange will be requested to cancel trading in Cambria Shares on the London Stock Exchange's AIM market and the listing of the Cambria (such cancellation to take effect no earlier than the date 20 Business Days after Bidco has so acquired or agreed to acquire 75 per cent. of the issued share capital of Cambria).

“Such cancellation and re-registration would significantly reduce the liquidity and marketability of any Cambria Shares in respect of which the Takeover Offer has not been accepted at that time and their value may be affected as a consequence.”

In an interview with AM last month, Lavery said that funding Bidco’s £82.5m takeover offer for Cambria had “not been easy”, explaining that the cash had been generated from a combination of bank debt and £2.5m of personal funds.

Explaining part of his reasoning for the move, he said: “Over the past 11 years we have employed stockbrokers and market analysts and dedicated millions of pounds and hundreds of man hours to let the market know about the business we built.

“Cambria doesn’t set the share price, the shareholders do, and the truth is that they just haven’t got it. The value that we see in the business has not been realised.

“I feel like I’m wasting my time and a lot of money.”

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