The board of budget hotel chain EasyHotel have recommended a £139m bid for the company from a consortium of retail investors, despite founder Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou rejecting the offer as “very low”.
The offer from Canadian real estate fund Ivanhoé Cambridge and Luxembourg’s ICAMAP Investments values the company at around 95p per share a 34% premium of EasyHotel’s Friday closing price of 70.5p per share.
Together the investors already control a 39% of the shares in the company.
Commenting on the offer, Jonathan Lane, chairman of EasyHotel called the offer “fair and reasonable” and said the offer would help to enable the group to accelerate its European expansion plans.
He said: “The Independent EasyHotel directors consider that the offer is fair and reasonable and in the best interests of shareholders, the company, its employees and wider stakeholders. Liquidity in EasyHotel stock has been limited since the company was admitted to AIM five years ago.
“If accepted, the offer should enable the EasyHotel Group to accelerate its expansion into major European cities where it sees significant opportunity, underpinning the long-term growth and prosperity of the EasyHotel brand.”
However founder Haji-Iannou, who still holds a 27% stake in the business, said in a statement: “I find the offer from ICAMAP to be very low and I urge all other shareholders to take no action until the true value and future potential of easyHotel can be evaluated.”