20 Aug 2013

Abano Healthcare names its price

8:26 am on 20 August 2013

Craigs Investment Partners analyst Stephen Ridgewell says anybody wanting to take over Abano Healthcare would probably have to offer more than $7.05 a share, or $120.6 million.

Earlier this month, Abano said it had rejected an unsolicited takeover bid from interests associated with its joint-venture partner, Peter Hutson, and that the offerer intended to move promptly to make a formal takeover offer.

Abano's board said the indicative price of the proposed takeover was above the then market price of $5.86 a share but that it substantially failed to reflect the company's value or prospects.

Mr Ridgewell said stripping out some or all Abano's head office costs would mean Abano is worth between $7.85 and $8.64 a share to a potential acquirer.

Mr Ridgewell said a takeover offer is unlikely to be as high as the top end of that range.

If a takeover bid does occur, he said a likely scenario is Mr Hutson buying the half of Bay International he doesn't own, while other parts of the business - the pathology and radiology operations - would be sold to third parties.

That would leave the acquirer with Abano's dental operations, which account for more than 70% of operating earnings.