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Fonciere Paris Counters Offer With Buyback, Dividend Increase

Nov. 16 (Bloomberg) -- Fonciere Paris France SA offered to raise its dividend and buy back a quarter of its shares for 117 euros ($159) each to counter a bid from the office landlord’s biggest shareholder. The shares advanced to the highest in more than three months.

The company, known as FPF, will raise its 2011 dividend due for payment next year by 50 cents, or 9 percent, to 6.25 euros a share, according to a statement today. Its buyback price exceeds the 100 euros-a-share offer for the Paris-based company by Cofitem-Cofimur SA, backed by insurers Allianz SE and Covea SGAM.

FPF forecast that the value of its assets will rise in the second half and earnings excluding those gains and one-time items will advance 5.2 percent to 8.8 euros a share in 2011. FPF also predicted profit growth for next year.

The Cofitem-Cofimur offer “represents an opportunistic financial transaction initiated in a depressed stock market environment at a price that does not reflect the value that shareholders can legitimately expect to obtain,” FPF said.

FPF rose as much 7.4 percent to 109.50 euros in Paris, the highest since Aug. 4. The shares were up 4.4 percent at 106.50 euros as of 9:45 a.m.

To contact the reporters on this story: Simon Packard in London at packard@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew Blackman at ablackman@bloomberg.net.

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