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FCC Rises on Report Soros May Acquire Controlling Stake

Fomento de Construcciones & Contratas SA rose the most in almost five months after El Confidencial reported that billionaire George Soros may buy control of the Spanish construction company.

Soros is in talks with billionaire Esther Koplowitz to inject funds into B-1998, the holding company through which her family controls Madrid-based FCC, the news website reported today. Koplowitz asked Jean-Marie Messier, a former chief executive officer of French media company Vivendi SA, to advise on reorganizing debt tied to her controlling stake in the Spanish builder, Bloomberg News reported in November.

FCC jumped as much as 5.6 percent, the steepest intraday gain since Jan. 17, and was trading up 5.3 percent at 17.74 euros as of 11:27 a.m. in Madrid.

“Evidently it would be good for FCC because it would reconfigure the financial situation of its main shareholder,” Pablo Ortiz, an analyst at Interdin Bolsa with a neutral recommendation on FCC stock, said by phone. “Investors shouldn’t lose sight of the company’s fundamentals though.”

B-1998’s biggest creditors, Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria SA and Bankia SA, are advising the family to accept 600 million euros ($812 million) from Soros, an amount that would give him control of the vehicle and therefore FCC, El Confidencial reported. Koplowitz doesn’t want the amount to exceed 400 million euros so that she can maintain control of B-1998 and FCC, the website reported.

A spokesman for FCC, who asked not to be identified by name in line with company policy, declined to comment on the report. Michael Vachon, a spokesman for Soros in New York, didn’t immediately respond to an e-mail seeking comment before business hours.

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