According to Reuters and Market Watch, Apple supplier AMS has renewed a $5 billion bid for its takeover offer of Osram, hoping a lower shareholder acceptance requirement will be enough to secure its acquisition of the German lighting company.
The Austrian sensor maker failed with its first offer last month. Some investors had hoped for a higher offer from Advent and Bain Capital after the two financial investors had announced a possible offer for Osram at the end of September, but then abstained.
After the finance duo’s exit, AMS Chief Executive Alexander Everke continued to negotiate with Osram to overcome their opposition, after they had voiced doubts about the ability of AMS (with 8,500 staff) to integrate Osram’s more than 24,000 employees.
Talks aiming at enhancing “the cooperation between the two companies and expand on Osram’s existing photonics strategy” continue, AMS sai
According to Reuters, the document does not say Osram’s digital business should be sold, but that AMS and Osram will jointly reassess every division for its longer-term contribution. AMS had previously said it would seek “the best owner” for the unit.
Osram said it welcomed the ongoing discussions and hoped an agreement could be finalized soon.
Around 10% of Osram shares are held by exchange-traded funds, which according to German law, are not allowed to sell their stake as long as the takeover is not completed, banking sources say. Retail investors hold 20%-25%, the sources say.
AMS now has to win support from two major investors. These are U.S. hedge fund Sand Grove Capital which built up a 5.75% stake just six days after AMS said it would renew its offer, and Allianz Global Investors, which recently reduced its 9% stake in Osram to just over 5%. The German fund management group, which also owns a 3% stake in AMS, had previously spoken out against Bain’s initial offer of €3.4 billion, saying it amounted to a “knock-down price.”
The Austrian company sees the acquisition of Osram as a way to diversify its portfolio and reduce its reliance on iPhones made by Apple, which accounts for approximately 40% of AMS’s group sales. But that business is increasingly under threat as Apple brings its chip-making capabilities in-house.
Tagged with acquisition, AMS, Osram