Plus500’s top shareholder Odey Asset Management yesterday rebuked a £460m deal for the company from Teddy Sagi’s Playtech and said it would welcome offers from rival bidders.
Odey, which was founded by hedge fund investor Crispin Odey, has amassed a 25 per cent stake in the troubled spreadbetting company alongside JP Morgan, which owns 8.5 per cent.
Playtech, 33 per cent owned by Sagi, on Monday unveiled a 400p a share offer for the company, recommended by Plus500’s management, but Odey said the price “materially undervalues” it.
Before that, Plus500 shares crashed by nearly 70 per cent last month after it emerged the City watchdog had launched a probe into the company’s anti-money laundering procedures. due to concerns it was failing to comply with the rules.
The Israeli spreadbetting company has seen shares fall from a high of 781p in April to a low of 265p. It closed at 371p last night.
“We believe 400p per Plus500 share in cash to be an opportunistic bid exploiting current regulatory issues and risks,” Odey said in a statement.
“In our view 400p materially undervalues Plus500 and we do not intend to vote in favour of the cash acquisition of Plus500 at this price.”