Feb 20 (Reuters) - A consortium led by Belgian publisher Mediahuis has raised its offer for Telegraaf Media Group (TMG) , matching a rival 273 million euro ($290 million) bid by Dutch billionaire John de Mol, sending TMG shares up as much as 5 percent.
Mediahuis and its partner VP Exploitatie (VPE) now control almost 60 percent of TMG shares but De Mol, who holds a stake of around 20 percent, is set to fight on.
Talpa, de Mol’s investment vehicle, said it was considering the raised offer and confirmed its intention to launch a public offer for all outstanding TMG shares.
De Mol, best known as the creator of hit television show Big Brother, could block Mediahuis from reaching a 95 percent threshold needed to take TMG private.
TMG publishes top-selling Dutch daily de Telegraaf and also owns Sky Radio and several leading magazine titles.
The Mediahuis group raised its offer to 5.90 euros ($6.27) per share, up 12 percent compared to its December bid, matching De Mol’s offer. Shares touched a high of 6.05 euros on Monday, exceeding the offer price.
Mediahuis, which already owns Dutch media concern NRC media and also publishes Flemish daily De Standaard, among other titles, said on Sunday it acquired Navitas’ 6.7 percent stake in TMG.
Combined with an earlier secured Delta Lloyd stake of about 11 percent and VPE’s 40 percent stake, that gives the Belgian consortium control over nearly 60 percent of TMG shares.
TMG confirmed the receipt of the increased offer and said it is in talks with Talpa Holding and Mediahuis/VPE. ($1 = 0.9415 euros) (Reporting by Wout Vergauwen; Editing by Keith Weir)