Social housing maintenance firm aims to expand home care business with purchase

Social housing maintenance firm Mears has reached an agreement to buy home care group Supporta for £27.2m.

The offer is supported by the directors of the publicly listed Supporta, who are to unanimously recommend shareholders back the offer.

Mears said the purchase will allow it to expand its home care business and bid for bigger contracts in this area, seen as important because councils are seeking to reduce the number of providers for outsourced services.

The all-share offer values Supporta at 55% its closing price yesterday, and is to include an issue of 10 million new Mears shares for Supporta shareholders, giving them almost 12% of the company.

Bob Holt, chairman of Mears, said the offer for Supporta was transformational for its care business. He said: “Supporta provides quality public sector services and the amalgamation of the two care brands and their subsequent rebranding as Mears will provide the care sector with a market leader with customer service at the very top of its agenda.

Clive Grace, chairman of Supporta, said the Mears offer was attractive in both “price and currency.” He said: “The offer price is at a significant premium and Mears shares have significantly greater liquidity than Supporta shares and enable our shareholders to benefit from any upside accruing from the transaction as shareholders in the enlarged group.”