Reports claim housebuilder ‘leaning towards’ bid for billion-pound firm

Shares in Persimmon fell at the beginning of this week after reports the housebuilder was exploring a bid for a smaller rival. 

According to Sky News, the £2.8bn-turnover builder was “leaning towards” submitting an offer for Cala Group, which is supposedly valued at £1bn by owner Legal & General. 

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Source: Shutterstock

Shares in the York-based homebuilder were valued at £14.79 at the end of Friday but fell when markets opened on Tuesday on the back of the weekend’s rumours. 

Values fell 3.5% to a low of £14.27 this morning (Wednesday), before recovering slightly, as investors prepared themselves for a potential capital raise. 

Sky said City analysts had suggested other housebuilders, including Taylor Wimpey and Avant Homes, could also consider bids in the auction, which is reportedly being overseen by bankers at Rothschild. 

A spokesperson for Persimmon said the firm refused to comment on speculation.

L&G took control of Edinburgh-based Cala in 2018, when it was valued at £600m. 

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Last year, turnover at Cala dropped 7.3% to £1.26bn, while pre-tax profit fell 33.6% from £169m to £112m. Home completions also dropped 3.6% to 2,917. 

A recent trading update for Persimmon revealed the housebuilder was on track to complete more than 10,000 homes in 2024 after a “good start to the year”. The firm had seen its income and profit dip in 2023. 

L&G Capital have been contacted for comment.