National Gypsum has been bombarded by new buy-out offers in the last two days from Wickes Cos. and a management-led investor group, with management apparently landing on top of the heap for the moment.
The last offer in the bidding flurry came from Aanchor Acquiring Corp., a group headed by National Gypsum Chairman and Chief Executive John P. Hayes, which sweetened its offer to $46 in cash per share and $44 face value in subordinated discount debentures. The group previously had offered $46 in cash and $28 in notes for each of the 22.8 million outstanding shares of the Dallas building products and services firm.
National Gypsum declined to put a value on the proposal. Wall Street analysts have been valuing the debentures at 54% to 60% of their face value, which would make the latest management offer worth about $70 to $72 per share.
Santa Monica-based Wickes threw a one-two punch at National Gypsum on Thursday, hiking its bid to buy the company to $64 per share in cash only hours after offering $60 per share, a bid that apparently failed to improve on a buy-out proposal from the management-led group. Wickes' $60-a-share offer had the advantage of being an all-cash deal, but analysts still valued the old management offer slightly higher.