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Local Tech Wire
RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. — In a public blog post addressed to Cisco (NASDAQ:CSCO) CEO John Chambers, two investment advisers with holdings in Tandberg ASA say Cisco’s $3 billion offer for the video-conferencing equipment-maker based in Norway is off-base and does not account for Tandberg’s growth potential.
"We believe that a higher, more appropriate price for the acquisition of Tandberg, taking into account its growth profile and the substantial scope for sales and cost synergies, is not in conflict with Cisco’s respect of the principles of prudence and financial fairness," Peter Germonpre of Panta Capital in London and Dan Scott of Scott & Associates AG in Zurich wrote in an posted on Panta’s Web site.
They addressed the letter to Chambers and Ned Hooper, senior vice president of corporate development and the consumer group and the person Cisco says is responsible for acquisitions strategy.
Cisco’s offer for Tandberg shares closes Monday. The equipment maker reportedly has decided that there’s no deal if it cannot get 90 percent of Tandberg’s equity holders to agree.
"While we fully agree with your statements that each corporate entity should respect the broader principles of prudence and financial fairness in pursuing an active M&A strategy, we also believe that in this specific case your offer does not reflect the true value of Tandberg’s business prospects nor does your offer reflect the premium to market value that you claim it does," Germonpre and Scott wrote.
Cisco said its offer, made Oct. 1, represented a 38 percent premium on Tandberg’s July 15 stock price.
"We fail to understand why you pick July 15th as a reference date," the investment advisers said, adding that Tandberg has been a takeover target for a year and a half.