November 13, 2008 / 4:30 PM / 10 years ago

UPDATE 1-Loring Ward to be bought by Werba for $11.25/shr

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Nov 13 (Reuters) - Fund services firm Loring Ward International Ltd LW.TO said it agreed to be acquired by private equity firm Werba Reinhard Inc, led by its largest shareholder, for $11.25 per share, or about $87 million, in cash.

The news of the deal comes less than a month after Loring Ward said its proposed sale to Werba for $18 per share may not be completed as its assets under management had fallen below the level agreed upon in the takeover agreement.

On Oct. 28, Loring Ward, whose assets had then declined about 30 percent, also tried to renegotiate the sale price to $15 per share.

Werba Reinhard is a company controlled by Loring Ward’s largest shareholder, Eli Reinhard. According to Reuters data, private investor Eli Reinhard owns 21.2 percent stake in Loring Ward, as of Feb. 14.

Thursday’s offer price is currently equivalent to about C$13.92 per share, a premium of about 74 percent over Loring Ward’s closing price of C$7.99 on Wednesday.

The deal is worth about C$107.6 million based on Loring Ward’s 7.73 million shares outstanding as of Oct. 31, according to Reuters data.

Shares of the New York-headquartered Loring Ward were up 48 percent at C$11.85 in morning trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

In a statement on Thursday, Loring Ward said one of the closing conditions for the sale was that the assets managed should not fall more than 20 percent from Nov. 6.

Loring Ward, which had $5.2 billion in total assets under management and administration at Sept. 30, said last week that its total assets had declined to about $4.3 billion at Oct. 31 due to global equity market declines.

The deal is currently expected to close at the end of January 2009. ($1=1.229 Canadian Dollar) (Reporting by Dilipp S. Nag in Bangalore; Editing by Amitha Rajan)

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