Lehmann has backed the bid from Hess after it matched Allied Domecq’s £60m bid. The board believed a takeover by a big multinational could “compromise the company’s independence”.
But Allied has now upped its offer by 15 cents a share to value the winemaker at £62m, on condition that its share in Lehmann is increased from its current 14.53% to at least 50.1%. Previously, AD had wanted that share to be 90%.
Hess - which owns vineyards Stateside in the Napa Valley - was due to buy Lehmann at the beginning of September before AD stepped in.