€27m management buyout tipped for Belfast tech firm

14 Aug 2008

Scientific digital camera maker Andor Technologies has agreed the terms of a takeover by a consortium that includes members of its management team.

The group, known as Thorndale, reached an agreement with Andor’s independent directors to pursue the deal.

Andor is recommending a cash offer of 73 pence per share, which will be implemented through a scheme of arrangement.

The acquisition values Andor at around €27m and represents a premium of some 30.4pc to the closing price per Andor share on 23 July last.

The independent directors of Andor are backing the acquisition, which must be backed by shareholders.

Thorndale said the management of Andor believed the company’s stock market value is unlikely to rise over the next 12-18 months and this would create uncertainty for the company.

Andor, whose cameras are used throughout the academic, industrial and government research world, is listed on the London AIM market and also has offices in the US. In 2006, the company reported revenues of £9.2m sterling, a year-on-year increase of almost 23pc.

The company recently emerged as a central player supporting a team of UK, French and Swiss astronomers — including a team from Queen’s University Belfast (QUB) — in the discovery of two Jupiter-sized planets.

The two planets were discovered around stars in the constellations of Andromeda and Dephinus. The planets were the first to be found during the UK-led SuperWASP (Wide Angle Search for Planets) programme.

By John Kennedy

Pictured: the Andromeda constellation

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years