Barclays is considering adding a cash element into its €65bn offer for Dutch banking group ABN Amro, the London-based bank said on Thursday.
‘The bank is looking at possible alternatives within the offer, including a part cash payment,’ Barclays said in a statement. Earlier this week, Barclays’ CEO John Varley told various European newspapers that the bank could bring out a better offer.
In addition, Barclays said the Dutch financial sector watchdog AFM has extended its bid deadline from July 23 to August 6.
On Monday the rival bidder for ABN Amro – a consortium, made up of Fortis, Royal Bank of Scotland and Santander – brought out a €71bn offer for the Dutch bank consisting almost entirely of cash.
Yesterday the Dutch shareholders’ association VEB withdrew its request that a Dutch court appoint three independent board members at ABN Amro to safeguard the bidding process.
The case had been due to be heard today by the company court, which deals with business conflicts. The VEB said it is satisfied that ABN Amro would ensure the biddig process would take place in a ‘fair and transparent manner’.
The Financieele Dagblad said on Thursday that the VEB withdrew its case shortly after it was clear that the Dutch central bank was planning to intervene in the takeover battle. The VEB still has another case pending against ABN Amro, this time alleging mismanagement.
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