Zetar jumps on takeover offer -UPDATE

Shares in snack foods group Zetar leapt 23 per cent on Monday morning after its management recommended a takeover offer for the firm.

Shares in snack foods group Zetar leapt 23 per cent on Monday morning after its management recommended a takeover offer for the firm.

Under the terms of the offer Zetar shareholders will receive 297 pence in cash for each share.

The offer by German food firm Zertus values Zetar at around £42.7m, a premium of 25.6% to its closing share price of 236.5p.

Zetar shareholders who owned shares at the close of play last Friday will also receive the dividend of three pence per share.

Non-Executive Chairman David Williams, said discussions with the Zertus team had been undertaken "in a friendly and courteous manner and this bodes well for our loyal and hard-working executive directors and employees, without whom the business would not be as successful as it is today".

"I firmly believe this is a good offer for both shareholders and employees," he added.

Jrn Riemer, a director of Zertus, called the target firm "a particularly well managed confectionery and snacks business".

"We are impressed by Zetar's proven track record for innovation and brand building and are excited about the prospect of jointly expanding our enlarged portfolio of products to new markets," he said.

This is what analysts at Merchant Securities have to say of the whole matter: "The bid price of 297p per share equates to a historic 2012 Enterprise value/Earnings before taxes, interest, depreciation and amortization (EV/EBITDA) of 6.0x and a forward 2013 EV/EBITDA of 5.1x, broadly in line with its historical average and UK small-mid cap peer group.

We believe the offer is fairly sensible for Zetar shareholders given the fragility surrounding UK consumer sentiment. We do not anticipate a counter bid. The offer confirms our view that the business was undervalued. Zetar's product lines, production and distribution capabilities will complement Zertus."

Zetar's shares were up 23% to 291p at 0930 on Monday.

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