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Morrison brother linked with German bank's bid for AWG

FINANCE

GORDON Morrison could regain control of the Morrison contracting business that he and his brother sold to utility AWG for £263 million in 2000.

Mr Morrison is part of a team led by German bank WestLB which has offered £900 million in cash for AWG.

If successful, he would be put in charge of two divisions: construction, which made an operating profit of just £800,000 in the half-year to September 30 despite turning over £385.6 million, and facilities management.

WestLB said: 'The bid is a premium of 25 per cent to the closing price of AWG's shares on January 30, 2003 and a premium of 28 per cent over the average price of AWG's shares in the three months before.'

The Competition Commission could rule against a takeover as WestLB also owns Mid Kent Water, but the bidders claim to have a 'solution' to this problem.

The bank hopes to send out an offer later this month but AWG, which reports its annual results on June 4, has rejected the bid as 'unacceptable'.

Insiders suggest AWG's claim for £130 million against Mr Morrison's brother, Sir Fraser, will be dropped by WestLB if the bank secures control of the firm.

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