Trimble in $18 million Punch Telematix bid

Tue Apr 27, 2010 5:27am EDT

* Cash bid at 26 pct discount to Monday close

* Punch undertaken to accept offer, subject to prospectus

* Bid values Telematix at about 13.5 mln eur

* Punch shares largely flat

BRUSSELS, April 27 (Reuters) - U.S. company Trimble Navigation (TRMB.O) has made a cash bid worth 13.5 million euros ($17.99 million) for Punch Telematix PTXB.BR, the Belgian maker of on-board computers for trucks which is majority owned by Punch International PUNC.BR.

The bid of 3.15 euros per share is at a 26 percent discount to the closing price on Monday, but a premium of 15 percent on the average closing rate over the past three months, the company said, and a 13 percent improvement on a previous offer.

The offer, which has been conditionally recommended by Punch Telematix, would increase its sales market due to Trimble's market position, said Punch Telematix Chief Executive Michel Van Maercke in a statement.

"The sales market for Punch Telematix solutions would become considerably larger, given that Trimble has a global presence as a leading provider of positioning solutions and applications for mobile resource management," he said in a statement.

Last month Punch Telematix and its parent Punch International rejected a 2.78 euros per share takeover approach from Belgian rival Transics. [ID:nLDE62H09U]

Shares in Punch International were largely unchanged at 0713 GMT, up 0.4 percent. ($1=.7504 EURO) (By Ben Deighton; Editing by Rupert Winchester)

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