British Land API talks break down

Aberdeen Asset Management PLC said talks with The British Land Co PLC regarding a possible sale of all or part of Aberdeen Property Investors (API), Aberdeen´s property portfolio, have been terminated.

Martin Gilbert, Aberdeen´s chief executive, indicated that talks broke down over a disagreement on price, saying that 'we are disappointed that the discussions with British Land have terminated but API is an excellent business and both we and the API management team believe that more value can be provided to Aberdeen shareholders by retaining the business rather than selling it at a depressed valuation.'

Analysts have estimated that the business could be valued between 70-90 mln stg, but reports in the weekend press suggested that British Land was only offering 40-45 mln stg.

The UK fund manager said having looked at a number of options for API, Aberdeen now intends to retain the business as part of its wider fund management operations.

With funds under management of 6 bln stg, API is one of Europe´s leading property fund managers and has the potential to grow substantially over the medium term, said Aberdeen in a statement.

'We have every confidence that the management team will continue to provide clients with a high level of service, thereby providing the platform for further development of the business,' commented Gilbert.

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