KEYreit says amended Huntingdon offer still inadequate

Fri Mar 1, 2013 8:32am EST
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March 1 (Reuters) - KEYreit, which owns small retail properties across Canada, rejected Huntingdon Capital Corp's offer to buy all its units for the same price that it had previously offered to buy 45 percent to take control.

Huntingdon earlier this week offered to acquire all KEYreit units, but at the January offer price of C$7 each in cash.

"As the offer price has not increased, our view continues to be that Huntingdon still does not intend to fairly compensate unitholders for KEYreit's assets," Donald Biback, chairman of the board of trustees, said in a statement on Friday.

KEYreit units closed at C$6.90 on Thursday on the Toronto Stock Exchange. They have gained 12 percent of their value since Huntingdon made the offer in January.

The KEYreit board had earlier rejected the partial bid, saying the proposal was inadequate and coercive.

Huntingdon, which holds 5.4 percent of KEY's trust units, owns and operates office, retail, industrial and aviation-related properties across Canada.

KEYreit said on Friday that Huntingdon Chief Executive Zachary George admitted in a pre-bid meeting that KEYreit was worth at least C$8 per unit.

Canadian REITs, or real estate investment trusts, have outperformed the broader stock market in the last 12 months, driven by strong demand for both commercial and retail space.

KEYreit, which has tenants that include fast-food chains like KFC and Pizza Hut and retailers like Shoppers Drug Mart , Staples Inc, also urged its unitholders to vote for a rights plan it adopted last month.