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Horizon in bid to takeover Crest Nicholson

British entrepreneur Hugh Osmond has tabled a £350 million bid to takeover Crest Nicholson.

The Sunday Times reported Horizon Acquisition, the quoted vehicle of Mr Osmond – who built up Pizza Express and Punch Taverns – put the takeover plan to a meeting of Crest’s 40 owner banks last week.

Horizon today confirmed it was in “preliminary discussions with several different companies, including Crest Nicholson, with a view to potentially executing a transaction with one of them”.

It added: “At this point, no view can be expressed as to whether a transaction will result from any of these discussions.”

Horizon raised more than £400 million in a stock market listing earlier this year.

The developer’s main lender is Lloyds Banking Group, which took control of Crest last year through a debt-for-equity swap.