February 8, 2018 / 7:57 AM / 9 months ago

Sampo and Nordic Capital launch 6.7 bln SEK cash bid for lender Nordax

STOCKHOLM, Feb 8 (Reuters) - Nordic financial holding company Sampo and private equity firm Nordic Capital on Thursday launched a joint recommended mandatory cash bid for Swedish niche lender Nordax valuing the firm at 6.66 billion crowns ($826 million).

Nordic Capital and Sampo, who already before the offer where large owners in Nordax, said they now owned 30 percent of the total number of shares and votes in the lender.

Nordax board unanimously recommended the offer.

The 60 crown per share offer represents a premium of roughly 15 percent compared to Nordax closing price of 52 crowns on Wednesday.

“Nordic Capital and Sampo have a shared view regarding the potential of Nordax going forward and we believe the required investments which will secure Nordax’s long-term competitiveness, are best done in a private environment,” Nordic Capital managing partner Kristoffer Melinder said in a statement.

Handelsbanken Fonder, Carnegie Fonder, Investment AB Oresund, and Swedbank Robur, representing 19 percent of shares and votes in Nordax, have agreed to accept the bid.

Sampo’s holdings include the largest Nordic property and casualty insurer If, 21 percent of the region’s largest bank Nordea and close to half of Danish insurer Topdanmark .

Nordic Capital, one of the largest private equity firms in the Nordic region, also holds a large stake in an other Swedish niche lender, Resurs Holding.

$1 = 8.0604 Swedish crowns Reporting by Johannes Hellstrom; editing by Niklas Pollard

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