Simon Property walks away from £3bn Capital takeover

Marion Dakers
SIMON Property gave up on its £3bn takeover interest in Capital Shopping Centres yesterday, blaming its target for failing to open up its books for due diligence.

American retail property giant Simon had until 5pm today to formalise its 425p a share bid thanks to a Takeover Panel deadline, but has decided to walk away after more than a month of pursuing the UK’s biggest mall owner.

Shares in Capital fell 2.75 per cent to 381.7p yesterday, having lost four per cent on Monday as hopes of a firm bid from Simon faded.

Simon reiterated its criticism of Capital’s £1.6bn purchase of the Trafford Centre in Manchester yesterday, claiming the deal hands 23 per cent of the company to Trafford seller Peel Holdings at an unfair discount.

Capital has batted away Simon’s calls to end the deal, but modified the terms last week to woo investors.

Capital shareholders including Simon, which holds a five per cent stake, will vote on whether to approve the Trafford Centre acquisition at a meeting on 26 January.

Simon’s financial advisers Citi, Lazard and Evercore stand to lose up to £60m in fees.