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Urban Logistics: Bidding war erupts over Abrdn property trust

Urban Logistics REIT has made a counteroffer for the Abrdn Property Income trust, at a 13 per cent premium to the one made by Custodian.
Urban Logistics REIT has made a counteroffer for the Abrdn Property Income trust, at a 13 per cent premium to the one made by Custodian.

A bidding war has erupted over the Abrdn Property Income Trust, as the £592m Urban Logistics REIT has made a counteroffer to Custodian Property Income’s bid for the trust.

In a stock exchange notice, Urban Logistics said it had made an offer 13 per cent above Custodian’s initial approach valuing Abrdn’s shares at 0.469 Urban Logistics shares, or 59.2p per share.

The merger offer from Custodian, which was made last month, was one of many in a wave of real estate investment trust merger proposals that have emerged in the sector over the last month.

Urban Logistics said the potential merger would be between “highly complimentary portfolios,” as only nine per cent of the combined portfolio would be outside logistics and retail warehouses.

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If successful, the merger would see the two real estate investment trusts combine into a £830m FTSE 250 constituent.

“The enlarged group would benefit from Urban Logistics’ highly experienced and successful management team, which has produced superior returns for shareholders delivering a cumulative total accounting return of 111.6 per cent over the period from its flotation in April 2016 to 30 September 2023,” it said.

The Abrdn trust said in a stock exchange announcement that it had noted the bid, which it received last Friday, and would now be waiting for a firm offer from Urban Logistics.

Urban Logistics shares are down 4.9 per cent this morning, while the Abrdn property trust has seen shares rise 2.3 per cent.