March 23, 2018 / 11:17 AM / in 6 months

Melrose, bidding for GKN, lifts deadline for U.S. regulatory approval

LONDON, March 23 (Reuters) - Britain’s Melrose, trying to buy GKN in a 7.8 billion pound ($11 billion) hostile takeover, is lifting a self-imposed deadline for approval by U.S. authorities to enable the acquisition to conclude should shareholders back it next week.

Melrose said on Friday that discussions with the two U.S. agencies — the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) and the Defence Security Service (DSS) — over it becoming the owner of aero parts-maker GKN were constructive and included potential interim mitigation measures.

“Melrose confirms it will waive the CFIUS and DSS conditions to its offer by no later than 17 April 2018 so as to allow the offer to become unconditional in all respects by no later than 19 April 2018,” Melrose said in a statement.

A mainstay of the British engineering sector, GKN makes parts for the Boeing 737 jet, Black Hawk helicopter and components for Volkswagen and Ford cars.

Shareholders have until March 29 to choose Melrose’s offer, or back a rival plan from GKN’s management to split off the group’s auto business and combine it with U.S.-based Dana Incorporated, leaving GKN focused on aerospace parts. ($1 = 0.7097 pounds)

Reporting by Sarah Young Editing by Keith Weir

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