Universal extends Sanctuary offer


LONDON -- Universal Music Group has extended its buyout offer for Sanctuary Group to Aug. 2 after the major admitted its proposal had been cleared by slightly more than half of the independent music firm's shareholding.

By 3 p.m. ET Thursday, acceptances had been received totaling more than 96 million Sanctuary shares, or 43.6% of the company's issue share capital.

Following a July 12 deadline, both parties had announced about 68.62 million acceptances, for about 30.88% of Sanctuary's total shares.

Centenary has also separately acquired stock, raising the approval rate to approximately 50.5% of Sanctuary's issued share capital.

In a statement issued this morning, Centenary confirmed the cash offer would be extended to 3:00pm at Aug. 2. Any further extensions would be made the following morning.

UMG on June 15 announced its intention to acquire London-based Sanctuary at 20 pence ($0.40) a share in cash, valuing the company at about £44.5 million ($87.68 million).

The proposal for the financially-troubled music firm encompasses recorded products, merchandising and artist services including artist management and live agency arms.

Centenary said today it has since received regulatory clearance in the United Kingdom, the United States, Germany, Spain, Austria and Australia.