Shanghai-based Chinese conglomerate Fosun International Limited is poised to win a long bidding war to acquire French holiday firm Club Méditerranée at €24.60 per share, as rival Italian investor Andrea Bonomi’s Global Resorts says it will not raise price again, according to a company statement.
Fosun International, owned by Chinese billionaire Guo Guangchang, sweetened its offer for Club Med to €24.60 on Dec 19, trumping Bonomi’s €24 euro offer.
Fosun’s winning proposal valued the Paris-based Club Med at €939 million (US$1.13 billion), up from the previous offer of €915 million.
“Global Resorts is satisfied that a higher valuation was achieved for minority shareholders,” says Bonomi in the statement.
The prolonged bidding war to acquire Club Med started last May, when Fosun International joined forces with private equity firm Ardian in proposing to acquire Club Med at €17 per share.
In June, the two parties decided to improve the terms of the offer, which has the backing of Club Med’s chief executive, Henri Giscard d’Estaing, to €17.5 apiece due to pressure from shareholders.
Then in August this year, the French financial markets regulator confirmed that Global Resorts has proposed a sweetened deal at €21 per share. A few days later, Fosun announced it would withdraw its bid.
But a month later, Fosun and Ardian, with a new co-investor Chinese travel agency U-Tour, launched a last-minute counter offer with a price tag of €22 per share, valuing Club Med at €839 million.
At that time, Fosun bought Ardian’s stakes in Club Med to increase its total shareholding to 18%, compared with 10% owned by Global Resorts then.
In early November, Global Resorts SAS offered €23 per share in a deal that valued the Paris-based Club Med at €874 million. Global Resorts also bought Club Med shares on the open market, bringing its total shareholding of Club Med to 15.9%, with options to further expand it to 18.9%.
It also attracted U.S. private equity giant Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Co. (KKR) as a minority co-investor in the deal.
Founded by the Italian Bonomi family, Investindustrial operates through a series of investment funds and holding companies, each managed independently and established in the United Kingdom, Spain, Switzerland, Luxembourg, the United States and China.
The family currently has around €4.4 billion of assets under management.