Scania shares soar over bid rumours

Shares in Swedish heavy truck manufacturer soared by almost 20 percent on the Stockholm stock exchange on Wednesday amid rumours that German industrial conglomerate MAN was preparing a bid for the group.

The Scania issue was up by 18.23 percent to 421.50 kronor on Wednesday about 90 minutes after trading opened, a day after the stock had been suspended due to takeover rumours that had pushed it up by nine percent.

According to Swedish financial daily Dagens Industri, Swedish financial holding group Investor, one of the main Scania shareholders, would be ready to sell its stake to MAN.

Investor, the investment holding group of the powerful industrial and financial Wallenberg family empire, holds 10.8 percent of the capital and 19.3 percent of votes in Scania.

Investor holds big stakes in many of Sweden’s biggest companies, including Ericsson and Electrolux.

However, Dagens Industri and the Financial Times reported that German automaker Volkswagen, Scania’s main shareholder with 18.7 percent of the capital, is not interested in selling its stake.

Rumours have been circulating of a takeover since Tuesday.

Scania said in a statement after the stock market’s closure on Tuesday that it had reason to believe MAN would launch a bid.

“Scania announces that the company has received information to the effect that there are reasonable grounds to assume that MAN will make a bid for the company,” it said.

In Germany, a MAN spokesman declined to comment on speculation but said the group’s supervisory board had met on Tuesday.

He declined to say what had been on the agenda and there were no plans for the meeting to continue on Wednesday.