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Shareholders say no to Countrywide takeover

Countrywide shareholders have rejected 3i Group’s 1.02bn takeover bid.

3i needed 75% of shareholders’ votes to buy Countrywide but only managed to achieve 58%.

Countrywide chairman Christopher Sporborg says: “The directors worked hard for several months to get the best offer for shareholders. We are disappointed by the outcome of the meeting but we respect the views of shareholders.

“We have to move on and the board will be discussing the best way forward for the company.”

3i has been in talks with Countrywide since September but these have followed a rocky path. Earlier this month, one of Countrywide’s major shareholders, Artisan Partners, tried to block the move due to concerns over its fairness, prompting the European Commission to set a February 8 deadline for an inquiry into the acquisition.


Money for nothing, your HIPs for free

Cost has always been a key issue with Home Information Packs. I have no doubt that if HIPs were free the attitude towards them would be dramatically different to the hostile reception they have received to date.

Words matter as the FSA takes control

Over the coming weeks I will be looking at some of the requirements under home reversions regulation that I think will have the most striking impact on the advice process and disclosure requirements.

Em- appoints BDM for Ireland and Scotland

Em- has appointed a business development manager for Ireland and Scotland.Helen Connor will be based in em-s Scottish office and will support field based BDM Linda Grant for the same area. Connor will both be focussing on managing broker accounts, providing a customer service function and helping brokers with their revenue streams.Roger Morris, managing director […]

Guarantees in the retirement income market

Lorna Blyth, Royal London  Do guarantees benefit customers and, if so, when? To answer this conundrum we commissioned Millimans, a global actuarial consulting firm, to conduct an independent review of the UK retirement income market and whether guarantees really do offer customers better value for money. The brief The study was one of the most comprehensive undertaken […]


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