John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

Cisco Again Threatens to Abandon Tandberg Bid

takeitleaveitWith opposition to its $3 billion bid to acquire Tandberg ASA mounting, Cisco Systems (CSCO) is extending its offer for the video teleconferencing company until Nov. 18. And it’s leaving the terms and conditions unchanged. So shareholders who’ve balked at the offer have an additional eight days to mull it over. Should they decline to accept it at the end of that period, Cisco may walk away from the deal rather than increase its bid.

“Soon after expiration of the extended offer period on 18 November 2009 at 5:30 pm CET (1630 GMT), Cisco will announce whether the 90 percent condition for the offer has been met,” the company said in a filing this morning. “If not, Cisco will evaluate whether or not to withdraw the offer.”

But frankly, Cisco’s probably doing that already. After all, the company currently holds rights to acquire just 9.37 percent of Tandberg. And last Friday, minority shareholders Panta Capital and Scott Associates AG issued a public letter dismissing Cisco’s bid as too low, echoing comments made by a group of investors that controls 24 percent of Tandberg’s shares back in October.

So Cisco has a little more than a tenth of the investor support it needs to go through with the takeover. Unless it raises its bid to overcome the resistance of shareholders who believe it is too low, it seems it’s offer may come to naught though Tandberg’s board has unanimously accepted it.

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