Shares in the artificial intelligence company Appen surged higher this morning after it received a takeover offer.
During the trading session, Appen was put into a trading halt pending the release of another announcement.
Appen received an unsolicited, conditional, and non-binding indicative proposal from Canada’s Telus International to acquire it for $9.50 per share. This represented a 48% premium to the Appen share price at yesterday’s close and valued the company at approximately $1.2 billion.
The board stated it would engage with Telus however, it suggested that the offer would not be enough to get a deal over the line. The company stated:
“The Board is in discussions with Telus to seek an improvement in the terms of the Indicative Proposal. To facilitate this, the Board has offered to provide, on a non-exclusive basis, limited business and financial information, subject to Telus agreeing to enter into a mutually acceptable confidentiality and standstill agreement, which it has yet to execute. At this point in time, no material non-public information has been provided to Telus.”
Upon requesting the trading halt, there has been speculation that another firm is also interested in offering a state.
A possibility is that Telus has done its due diligence and will possibly increase their offer. Another is that they will possibly withdraw this offer. Unfortunately, investors will need to be patient and wait a little longer before finding out what is really going on.