Canadian Manufacturing

WSP scraps offer for U.K.’s Sweett Group

Montreal engineering firm abandons $46.1 million offer after being outbid


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MONTREAL—Canadian engineering and construction company WSP Global Inc. is shelving an offer to buy Sweett Group plc, based in London, U.K.

WSP had announced the 24 million pound ($46.1 million) offer last month, saying it would pay 35 pence for each share of the project management firm.

As concerns about an ugly divorce between the U.K. and Europe sweep across global markets, however, Currie & Brown Holdings Ltd. topped WSP’s offer, saying it would pay shareholder 42 pence per share. The Montreal-based company said June 29 that it was considering its options, but has since announced it has “terminated efforts” to acquire Sweett.

The Canadian company said it has no intention of increasing its offer price of 35 pence per share and that no “further financial offers or overtures to meet with the Sweett board of directors are planned at this time.”

WSP had initially said the all-cash offer would help it to build its project management portfolio within Europe. The London-based firm, which has a more than 80-year history, has approximately 600 employees, most located in the U.K.


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