British homebuilder Crest Nicholson has confirmed the receipt of unsolicited, preliminary, and indicative proposals from Avant Homes Group concerning a potential all-share merger.  

The proposals did not constitute a takeover bid for Crest Nicholson by Avant. 

The latest indicative proposal from Avant suggested an all-share acquisition of Crest Nicholson, resulting in the issuance of new shares to Avant’s shareholders.

It also suggested maintaining Crest Nicholson’s listing on the London Stock Exchange (LSE). 

Under the terms of the proposal, shareholders of Avant, which include Elliott Investment Management and its affiliates, would hold an approximate 30% stake in the combined entity. Elliott is the main shareholder. 

Barclays Bank and Jefferies International served as co-exclusive financial advisors to Crest Nicholson. 

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After consultation with Barclays and Jefferies, Crest Nicholson’s board determined it was not inclined to pursue discussions with Avant at this time, primarily due to an ongoing offer period related to another possible all-share offer from UK-based homebuilder Bellway.  

Crest Nicholson communicated this decision to Avant on 27 June 2024. 

Meanwhile, on 7 May, Bellway approached Crest Nicholson with a non-binding all-share offer, estimated to be £650m ($834.93m), aiming to acquire its entire issued and to-be-issued share capital.  

Bellway’s board said that merging with Crest Nicholson presents a strong strategic and financial case. 

Aside from anticipated operational synergies and consistent shareholder returns, the deal is expected to offer Bellway benefits such as brand complementarity, enhanced market position as a top UK homebuilder, lower debt levels, and an expanded landbank. 

Crest had rejected the previous takeover proposal from Bellway. 

As per regulatory acquisition rules, Bellway must declare its intention to either proceed with a formal offer for Crest Nicholson or withdraw its interest by 11 July.