Swiss takeover board rules NewGAMe’s partial offer for GAM shares complies with rules

(Reuters) – Switzerland’s takeover board has ruled that a partial offer for up to 28 million shares of GAM Holding by an investor group comprising NewGAMe SA and Bruellan SA is in line with Swiss takeover rules, NewGAMe said on Thursday.

The board’s ruling, however, is subject to the conditions that NewGAMe supplemented its prospectus with additional information about the investor group, and details about the financing agreement between GAM and Rock Investment.

GAM said on Tuesday it had reached an agreement with French billionaire Xavier Niel’s NewGAMe and Rock Investment, to extend a liquidity lifeline of 20 million Swiss francs ($22.65 million) as asset manager Liontrust declared its bid for GAM unsuccessful.

The arrangement would be also that the investor group would propose new GAM board members at the upcoming extraordinary general meeting (EGM), where the fund manager’s current board is expected to stand down.

The regulator on Thursday also challenged the validity of the condition making NewGAME’s offer conditional to Rock’s candidates being elected to GAM’s board, NewGAMe said.

NewGAMe said it is reviewing the decision and has five trading days to appeal the decision before the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA).

Last week, a takeover offer from Liontrust won the backing of just 33.64% of GAM’s shareholders. The British firm on Tuesday formally declared its bid unsuccessful.

($1 = 0.8830 Swiss francs)

(Reporting by Kanjyik Ghosh in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)