URS Corp., a U.S. engineering- advisory company, agreed to buy U.K.-based Scott Wilson Group Plc after sweetening its offer to about 223 million pounds ($333 million) to trump a competing proposal from CH2M Hill Cos.
The purchase is for 290 pence a share, URS and Scott Wilson said today in a statement. Closely held CH2M of Englewood, Colorado, said it withdrew its bid.
The moves ended a bidding war for Basingstoke, England- based Scott Wilson, an engineering adviser whose projects include London’s Crossrail train line. CH2M offered 189 million pounds on June 28, hours after Scott Wilson accepted a 161 million-pound bid from San Francisco-based URS.
“URS’s higher bid is justified based on what we see as expanded growth prospects,” Stewart Scharf, a Standard & Poor’s equity analyst in London, said today in a note to clients. He recommends buying URS shares.
URS and Scott Wilson said their boards approved the transaction.
URS fell 24 cents to $39.35 at 4:15 p.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading. Scott Wilson rose 5 pence to 266 pence in London trading before the new URS offer was announced.