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P. M. BRIEFING : U.S. Group Sweetens Gateway Bid

June 23, 1989| From Times wire service s

LONDON — A U.S. partnership led by investment bank Wasserstein Perella & Co. today increased its takeover bid in a hotly contested corporate battle for Gateway Corp. PLC, Britain's third-biggest supermarket chain.

The higher bid, the second in two days, appeared to give the U.S. bidders an edge in the contest against rival Isosceles PLC, a British investor group, and was quickly endorsed by the company.

Wasserstein Perella and West German-controlled Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co. offered to pay $3.70 a share for Gateway, up from their previous offer of $3.65. If successful the deal, worth more than $3 billion, would be Europe's biggest ever leveraged buyout.

The British investor group Isosceles Thursday lifted its bid for Gateway by 31 cents to $3.60 a share.

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