Mouchel today told its shareholders to ’take no action’ in response to Costain’s revised £170m approach

Mouchel has speeded up the refinancing of its bank debt, in an attempt to remove a potential barrier to other bidders declaring their interest in the firm.

A statement released by Mouchel directors in response to today’s increased offer from Costain said: “On 6 December 2010, we announced that the refinancing of our banking facilities was proceeding to plan and that we expected to agree new medium term facilities by the time of our half year results announcement in March 2011.

“We have made significant progress since then and we expect to finalise the new facilities shortly. The group’s key relationship banks, Barclays, Lloyds Banking Group and RBS, remain supportive.”

Refinancing of the firm’s debt would potentially make the firm more attractive to potential suitors. Mouchel revealed on 6 December that it had attracted interest from a number of potential bidders, but these have failed to lead to any offer being made. The firm said it is “actively reviewing these and other options”.

Costain’s offer remains the only one on the table.