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Kennedy may net €22m

JOHN Kennedy, who chairs the British oil-services company Wellstream Holdings, could net more than €22m as a takeover battle looms for the firm.

Last week, Wellstream Holdings turned down a bid close to €1.3bn from the rival group GE. The US company had made a 750p per share offer for Kennedy's outfit. Traders and hedge funds have ploughed into the market in the expectation that a higher offer may yet materialise.

It is thought that other bidders may also be circling the company. National Oilwell Varco and Saipem -- part-owned by Italy's Eni -- are both thought to have made approaches to the company, which is the world's second-biggest producer of flexible oil pipelines.

Mr Kennedy, 60, who was appointed to the board of CRH -- the biggest company on the Dublin stock market -- in June of last year, holds more than 2.3 million shares in Wellstream Holdings, worth close to €22m.

A takeover would mean a second huge pay day for the businessman, who is based in Newcastle, England. Kennedy sold two million shares when Wellstream Holdings floated in 2008, netting close to €32m.

Sunday Independent