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When will Prudential get a break?

Over the last 24 hours there have been some interesting developments in the proposed takeover of AIG's Asian operations by UK outfit Prudential. However, after a relatively upbeat statement this morning suggesting that then companies were renegotiating on price it was being revealed that one of Prudential's largest shareholders, F&C Asset Management, will be voting against the acquisition.

While F&C is broadly supportive of the proposed acquisition it is concerned about the price, as are other investors, and whether or not Prudential can actually close the deal. This is a fairly big setback for Prudential although there is time to arrange one-to-one discussions with some shareholders to explain their plans in more detail and attempt to talk them around. This has been a very long drawn out affair for the Prudential management and the very fact it has some way to go even at this stage is a concern.

In many ways the company has done as much as it can, attempting to allay investor fears, but each day seems to bring new challenges and new problems for the management. Whether or not the deal will actually go through remains to be seen, but recent volatility in world stock markets is not helping the situation either.

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