UPDATE 1-F&C shareholders vote in favour of BMO takeover

Tue Mar 25, 2014 10:36am EDT
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LONDON, March 25 (Reuters) - F&C Asset Management's shareholders have voted in favour of a 708 million pound ($1.17 billion) takeover by Canadian lender Bank of Montreal, ending talk of a potential rival bid.

Votes representing 99.6 percent of F&C's shares supported the deal, the fund manager said in a statement on Tuesday, adding that trading in F&C shares will be suspended after the market close on May 6.

Bank of Montreal's offer, first announced in January, already had the blessing of F&C's largest shareholder, British insurer Aviva, which owns about 12 percent of the company.

F&C's second-largest investor, Standard Life, initially gave a cool response to the offer, amounting to 120 pence per share in cash and a 2 pence dividend, hoping for a better bid to emerge.

U.S. hedge fund Elliott Management Corp acquired derivatives equivalent to a stake of more than 10 percent, fuelling speculation over a potential bidding war.

However, a rival bid looked less likely after insurer Resolution announced that it was transferring management of 14.5 billion pounds away from F&C, moving most of the money to Schroders. ($1 = 0.6065 British Pounds) (Reporting by Chris Vellacott; Editing by Simon Jessop and David Goodman)