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Resolution rejects Pearl bid as Royal London expresses interest

Resolution has rejected a takeover bit from Pearl of 660p per share suggesting it significantly undervalues the provider and its prospects as part of Friends Financial Group.

Meanwhile, Royal London says it has reached a binding agreement with Pearl over acquiring certain assets from Resolution should they make a successful bid, including its protection arm Scottish Provident and offshore business Scottish Provident International Life Assurance.

Royal London would pay approximately £1.25bn for the assets in addition to providing £0.3bn of the debt funding for any offer made by Pearl.

In a statement to the stock market, Resolution says its chairman, deputy chairman and group chief executive met with representatives of and advisers to Pearl yesterday and Pearl put forward the offer.

Resolution says its Extraordinary General Meeting to approve its merger with Friends Provident will be held on November 5.

The statement says: “The Board of Resolution believes that the agreed merger with Friends Provident will create significant value for Resolution’s shareholders through their entitlement to a 50.9 per cent share of the value of Friends Financial, which comprises: combined embedded value, value of the combined new business franchises, value of the asset management businesses; and merger synergies.”

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