18 Jun 2012

Investors to vote on revised Metlifecare deal

9:51 am on 18 June 2012

An investor group says another rejig of a planned takeover deal by Metlifecare cannot be ruled out.

Investors will vote on Metlifecare's revised purchase of two other retirement village operators Vision Senior Living and Private Life Care on Thursday, a deal the company says is compelling.

But some institutional investors are unconvinced, and Metlifecare's share price has yet to recover to where it was before the deal was initially announced.

The Shareholders Association is against the offer as it stands. Chairman John Hawkins says there is little value in this deal for investors.

He says most of the cash would come from first time sales of new units and it seems, from the independent report, that most of those new units belong to Metlifecare anyway.

Mr Hawkins says consequently it's hard to see how there is particular benefit out of doing that deal.

He says the business model will be quite different from its two main competitors because Metlifecare will not have a large amount of care bed operations, so it is not known whether that will impact on the people going into their villages.

Mr Hawkins says the deal would bring a significant level of debt and Metlifecare shareholders are being asked to take on a greater level of risk when there doesn't seem to be a significant reward for that extra risk.

He says if the deal changes, the association's view of the merits of the offer may change too.

Major shareholder Retirement Villages cannot vote as it is involved in Private Life Care.

The deal needs the support of just over half of those who actually vote.