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Beazley Walks Away from Hardy Underwriting After Third Bid Is Shunned

Posted on 15 Dec 2010

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Beazley Plc has reported that it's ended talks to buy Hardy Underwriting Bermuda Ltd. after the Lloyd’s of London insurer denied a third, sweetened bid of about $287 million.

Hardy requested a price “substantially in excess” of the 350 pence a share Beazley offered on Dec. 1, the Dublin-based company said in a statement today. The fifth-biggest Lloyd’s insurer originally offered 300 pence a share in October, before raising its bid to 330 pence, or 171 million pounds, last month.

“I’m surprised, because the price is a good premium to where the share price was at 220 pence before we approached,” Beazley Chief Executive Officer Andrew Horton said in a telephone interview with Bloomberg. His company will now concentrate on expanding its operations in the U.S. and Europe while considering smaller “bolt on” acquisitions, he said.