Bidvest Makes $207 Million Unsolicited Offer for Caixa’s Mercantile Bank

Bidvest Group Ltd. (BVT), owner of South Africa’s biggest money changer, offered to buy Mercantile Bank Holdings Ltd. (MTL) to expand in consumer and retail banking.

The 35.5 cents-a-share offer is 69 percent more than Mercantile’s weighted average share price over the past 30 days, the Johannesburg-based target said in a statement to the stock exchange today. The offer values Mercantile at about 1.4 billion rand ($207 million), according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Caixa Geral de Depositos owns 92 percent of Mercantile. A spokesman at the Lisbon-based lender couldn’t immediately comment on the offer.

Mercantile rose 5 cents, or 25 percent, to 25 cents at the 5 p.m. close in Johannesburg trading. Bidvest shares dropped 95 cents, or 0.6 percent, to 150.50 rand.

To contact the reporter on this story: Robert Brand in Cape Town at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Alastair Reed at

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