Germany's largest rental company Vonovia is making a fresh attempt to take over smaller rival Deutsche Wohnen.
One week after the failed purchase offer, Vonovia is now offering a total of 19 billion euros for the Berlin company and has already secured almost 30 percent of the shares in advance.
Deutsche Wohnen shareholders are to receive 53 euros per share - one euro more than Vonovia had recently promised them.
"We calculated generously," said Vonovia boss Rolf Buch of the Reuters news agency. Deutsche Wohnen boss Michael Zahn and his fellow board members are still on board: He got the impression that many shareholders regretted the failure. "We do not want to withhold the opportunity to agree to the merger on better terms." The approval of the Deutsche Wohnen Board of Management is necessary so that Vonovia does not have to wait twelve months before making a new offer. The also required yes of the financial supervisory authority BaFin for the exemption from the blocking period should in view of this only be a matter of form.
"We are still convinced that a combination of the two companies brings strategic, economic and housing policy advantages," said Vonovia boss Buch.
"In this we are also supported by important Vonovia and Deutsche Wohnen shareholders." Nothing has changed in the sense of the takeover, said his colleague Zahn, who is to become Buchs' deputy in the new group.
More than half a million apartments
The two real estate giants listed in the leading index Dax own a total of 550,000 apartments valued at more than 80 billion euros, most of them in Germany. "Together, the two companies can better shoulder the necessary investments in climate protection, needs-based living and affordable living space," said both landlords. The future partners also want to hold on to their commitments to state politics in Berlin, which Deutsche Wohnen has viewed critically for a long time.
Vonovia failed a week ago because the group was only able to collect 47.6 percent and not the required 50 percent of Deutsche Wohnen shares.
Many hedge funds had speculated on a later domination agreement with a higher settlement and therefore withheld their shares.
Vonovia now wants to prevent that.
"We will not conclude a domination and profit and loss transfer agreement in the next three years," said Buch to Reuters.
"That way, the speculation is out." Those who sell their shares faster and don't gamble until the end should get their money sooner.
The company from Bochum is sticking to the 50 percent hurdle.
The new attempt - the third overall - does not come as a surprise.
Vonovia has already secured additional shares in Deutsche Wohnen since the failure on the market.
It now comes to almost 30 percent and therefore now believes that it will be easier to reach the goal.
Deutsche Wohnen has also assigned a large part of its own shares to Vonovia.
Vonovia already has a plan to refinance the transaction: Of the 20 billion euros that it has secured as a loan for the takeover, eight billion should be redeemed through a capital increase.
According to the Cartel Office, Vonovia's portfolio comprised a total of around 354,000 own residential units in Germany at the end of March.
Deutsche Wohnen owns around 155,000 rental apartments, around 70 percent of them in Berlin.