Australian Unity Office Fund receives improved takeover offer

Australian Unity Office Fund receives improved takeover offer

A consortium of two major Sydney-based property companies has put some icing on the cake in its bid for Australian Unity Office Fund (ASX: AOF), a holder of nine metropolitan and CBD office properties with a market cap of close to $487 million.

On 4 June, a group associated with Abacus Property Group (ASX: ABP) and Charter Hall Group (ASX: CHC) made an indicative and non-binding proposal for AOF worth $2.95 per share.

The consortium had already acquired a 19.9 per cent stake in the Melbourne-based commercial property fund, making the offer worth around $385 million.

Today the target company, formally reporting as Australian Unity Investment Real Estate Limited (AUIREL), announced the consortium has upped the ante by offering $3.04 per AOF share as a "best and final" proposal.

But will this $11.5 million sweetener be enough for this company which wholly owns properties in Sydney, Adelaide, Melbourne, Brisbane and Canberra? 

AUIREL has emphasised shareholders need not take any action yet. The improved proposal is subject to a limited number of conditions including satisfactory completion of confirmatory due diligence on a non-exclusive basis, entry into a scheme of implementation agreement and and approval from the Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB).

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