Shares rise at GB Group as US private equity firm confirms possible takeover

Shares in Chester-based identity verification specialist, GB Group, rose by more than 10% today as a US company considers a possible cash takeover.

Chicago-based private equity firm GTCR has confirmed it is mulling a takeover of the listed firm.

In a statement GTCR said: “There can be no certainty that any firm offer will be made, nor as to the terms on which any firm offer might be made.

“A further announcement will be made as and when appropriate.”

GTCR has until 5pm on October 4 to make a formal offer.

Shares in GB Group rose by 10.1% following the news with shares trading at 525.18 by close of play on 6 September.

GBG said any proposals received will be evaluated by the Board  together with its advisers.

It added: “Pending any further announcements GBG shareholders are advised to take no action. A further announcement will be made as and when appropriate.”

Alasdair Young, analyst at Panmure Gordon, said: “We reiterate our view that GBG is one of the UK’s best tech companies, and think the current valuation does not reflect the potential growth/margins of the group.

“Both factors are set to improve due to the inclusion of Acuant and increasingly US-weighted revenue exposure. The EV/Sales and P/E multiples of 4.6x and 25x respectively stand at 23/26% discounts to the 5-year averages. As such, we remain staunch buyers.”

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