Swedish small shareholders group recommends accepting VW bid for Scania

STOCKHOLM, April 16 Wed Apr 16, 2014 1:41am EDT

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STOCKHOLM, April 16 (Reuters) - Sweden's Aktiespararna shareholders association is recommending that its members, mostly smaller investors, accept German automaker Volkswagen AG's 200 crown per share offer to buy out minority stockholders in its Scania AB truck business.

"A yes is the least bad of the two alternatives," Aktiespararna Chief Executive Carl Rosen said in statement on Wednesday.

"To say no and risk a fall in the share price to levels around 130-140 crowns is not enticing."

Scania shares closed at 185.3 crowns on Tuesday, well below the bid level amid concerns that the offer will not reach the acceptance level needed for it to be completed.

Together with its majority-owned MAN SE unit, VW controls nearly 90 percent of votes and more than 60 percent of Scania shares. It has said it will not raise the bid.

Volkswagen is seeking to buy out the remaining minority shareholders of Sodertalje-based Scania, whose efficient production has left it with a profitability record that for years has been the envy of the industry.

The German auto giant is looking to speed up attempts at tying up Scania and MAN to create a trucks group capable of taking on larger rivals Daimler AG and Volvo AB .

But the plan suffered a setback last month when Scania board members without direct links with VW came out against the offer. Most of Scania's smaller shareholders have still to commit publicly either for or against the offer. (Reporting by Niklas Pollard; Editing by Kenneth Maxwell)

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