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Fonciere Paris France Rejects Offer by Its Largest Shareholder

Fonciere Paris France SA, an office landlord in the French capital, rejected a takeover bid by its largest shareholder, calling the offer opportunistic.

Cofitem-Cofimur SA, backed by insurers Allianz SE and Covea SGAM, on Oct. 7 offered 100 euros ($137) a share and bid for the convertible bonds and warrants they don’t already own. Cofitem-Cofimur didn’t discuss the plan with either Fonciere Paris France’s management or other major shareholders in advance, the property company said today in a statement.

“The fact that the offer has been made at a time when international stock markets are severely affected by macro-economic events underscores its highly opportunistic nature,” Fonciere Paris France said.

A bid by Fonciere des Regions SA that valued the Paris-based company at about 440 million euros, excluding debt, collapsed last month as a slide in stock markets distorted the terms of its share offer. Fonciere Paris France’s board and senior executives had supported that bid.

Covea, Fonciere des 6eme et 7eme Arrondissements de Paris SA and Associations Mutuelles Le Conservateur pledged to buy shares if the offer resulted in Cofitem-Cofimur owning more than a 60 percent stake.

French rules prohibit any an investor or partners from owning more than 60 percent of a real estate investment trust, which pays no corporation and capital gains tax in return for distributing most of its net rental income to investors.

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