An arm of state-owned conglomerate China Merchants Group has made a $3.4 billion takeover bid for Chindata Group Holdings, setting up a bidding war for the Asian data centre operator, reports the South China Morning Post. The group made a non-binding offer of $9.20 in cash per American depositary share, according to a statement Monday. The bid compares to a rival offer of $8 each from US private equity firm Bain Capital.
Beijing-based Chindata’s shares rose 12.3% in US trading overnight, their highest level since February. The company said last month a special board committee had hired Citigroup as an adviser after it received a going-private proposal from Bain Capital, which already has a major stake in the company.
Some analysts said at the time that a privatisation makes sense but Bain’s offer was likely too low. China Merchants Group said it views Chindata’s employees as instrumental to its success and plans to retain key staff to the extent possible. It plans to work closely with Chindata management to accelerate the next stage of its growth strategy and further unlock its capabilities, according to Monday’s statement.