The six month embargo on a repeat bid by Germany's E.ON for the UK utility ScottishPower is set to end in the coming days, prompting renewed speculation that another approach is likely.
The Scotsman newspaper reports that the lead-up to ScottishPower’s results presentation, set for May 24, could be a nervous time for the Glasgow-based electricity firm as the embargo on an E.ON bid comes to a close.
Last autumn, ScottishPower rejected three offers for the company from E.ON, the last of which was worth some GBP10.7 billion. The Scottish group remained insistent that this bid undervalued it, although some analysts were skeptical about this.
However, within days of E.ON dropping its interest in the company, ScottishPower replaced CEO Ian Russell with Philip Bowman, former head of drinks group Allied Domecq. He was seen as the driving force behind the latter’s sale to Pernod Ricard, leading to much speculation that he is planning a similar sell-off for ScottishPower.
However Mr Bowman has vigorously denied such accusations, and he is expected to stress the firm’s growth prospects when its results are released shortly.