Rescue bid from Limitless falls through, causing developer's shares to plunge 40%

Shares in mixed-use developer Minerva have plummeted by almost 40% on news its proposed takeover by Middle Eastern developer Limitless has fallen through.

In a statement to the Stock Exchange Minerva said “it has received confirmation from Limitless that it will not be proceeding with its proposed acquisition of Minerva and accordingly discussions between Limitless and Minerva have ended.”

Shares slumped to 50p after opening at 80.5p, valuing the company at just £81m. A year ago it was worth almost £420m.

Minerva development St Botolphs, near Aldgate,  to be completed in early 2010

Limitless was seen as a possible rescue bidder for Minerva, which has been hit hard by the credit crunch and been unable to get its flagship plans for the regeneration of Croydon town centre off the ground.

Limitless, a subsidiary of Arab conglomerate Dubai World, had said it was considering offering 160p per share for Minerva. However it today said it was unable to obtain necessary “third party consents” from Minerva on terms satisfactory to Limitless.

Limitless first said in May it was considering its options related to the developer.