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Smoove extends Pexa takeover deadline for third time


Smoove LON:SMV, the AIM-listed, software company providing data platforms to conveyancers, mortgage brokers and home-movers, is extending the deadline for talks to be concluded with Pexa Group [ASX:PXA], the Australian digital property settlements platform for a third time.

As previously reported Smoove extended the deadline just last month.

Smoove initially announced in April that it was in discussions with Pexa to acquire the Oxfordshire-based company in an all-cash offer. In a statement on Friday (11th August) the company said: “[…] a formal due diligence process is now well advanced. In order to allow for due diligence to continue […] the board has requested, and the Panel on Takeovers and Mergers has consented to an extension to the deadline by which PEXA is required either to announce a firm intention to make an offer for Smoove […] or to announce that it does not intend to make an offer.”

September deadline

The new deadline has now been extended to close-of-play on 8th September, but if needed Pexa and Smoove can try to extend the dedline once again.

The firm added: “There can be no certainty either that an offer will be made nor as to the terms of any offer, if made. A further announcement will be made as and when appropriate.”

The company remains in an offer period in accordance with the rules of the Code and the attention of shareholders is drawn to the disclosure requirements of Rule Eight of the City Code on Takeovers and Mergers,

As previously reported it is believed that there are other bidders for Smoove waiting in the wings.

In the company’s most recently released results, the company reported a 7.4% increase in revenue to GBP20.6m, despite the doom and gloom that has descended on the UK housing market. Smoove’s gross profit was flat year-on-year at GBP7.8m, but EBITDA fell into loss of GBP4.8m as a result of the company’s investment in its core eConveyancer business and in new product areas.

Loss leading

This led to a loss before tax of GBP5.6m, up from the GBP4.9m loss in 2022. The company had GBP10.1m cash in hand following a GBP3.7m return of capital through a tender offer in January.

The company closed trading at on 11th August at 47.5p, but was up to 41p quite soon after the announcement. Smoove has offered a 28.4% year-to-date return and down -28.6% over one-year, with its shares ranging between 27p and 67p over a 52-week period.

The company has an GBP27.1m market capitalisation.

As reported, Pexa was established in Australia in 2010 as the world’s first digital settlement platform born out of a 2008 Council of Australian Governments’ initiative to transition property lodgement and settlement away from an outdated paper-based process to a more efficient digital settlement process. Today more than 80% of all property transactions in Australia are completed via PEXA.

The Pexa brand operates in the UK as the trading name of Digital Completion UK Limited, established as a holding company in August 2020 and based at Portland Street, London. The company says it is working with the Bank of England “to streamline the re-mortgaging and property completion experience from start to finish,” to “advance how Britons buy and sell homes.”

Currently Pexa UK is involved in the remortgaging side of the business offering technology solutions and platforms to UK lenders, lawyers, and conveyancers in England and Wales, but is due to expand into sale and purchase in 2024.

Smoove listed on AIM in July 2014 and provides a software platform for home moving. The platform helps home movers to find and compare solicitors, estate agents, and other services related to moving home. Smoove also offers a range of tools and resources to help home movers with the administrative aspects of moving, such as packing lists and checklists.

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This article does not constitute investment advice. Make sure you do your own research or consult a professional advisor.

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