A City analyst has poured scorn on reports that Mitchells & Butlers' (M&B) securitisation could act as a 'poison pill' to Robert Tchenguiz's efforts to buy the managed bar group.
Suggestions in the media that M&B could see off a bid from Mr Tchenguiz's R20 investment vehicle via its £1.8bn securitisation were dismissed by Oriel Securities' Mark Brumby.
"We would suggest that the M&B securitisation is hardly likely to be effective as a poison pill," said Mr Brumby.
"Such things are reversible - witness Greene King and Laurel - and its existence could hardly be described as a secret," he added.
Mr Brumby said that R20 would have to offer close to 600p per share for M&B - "much less would be laughed at" - while much higher than this figure would possibly see M&B with a "shooting war on its hands".
M&B is expected to ask the Takeover Panel to impose a 'put up' deadline on R20, which is meanwhile understood to be lining up finance for a bid.