We are pleased to present the latest edition of Bird & Bird's Takeover Code Update, a periodical publication highlighting recent developments in the Public M&A arena of interest to the adviser community and listed corporates. 

2018 was a strong year for the Public M&A group at Bird & Bird. We have been involved in a number of exciting and high-profile takeovers in the last 12 months in the UK and elsewhere. 

We hope that you enjoy reading our Takeover Code Update. Please do get in touch should you require any assistance or advice.

What we have seen over the last 12 months

The year just passed has seen some high-profile UK public M&A activity, at the larger end in particular – the acquisitions of Shire plc and Sky plc representing two of the largest UK takeovers in several years. We consider below some noteworthy trends from 2018 and the year to date.

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The battle for Sky plc: the Chain Principle and Panel appeals

We consider the rulings of the Takeover Panel Hearings Committee and the Takeover Appeal Board in 2018 in relation to the competing offers for Sky plc and the application of the "Chain Principle".

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Impact of the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union on the Takeover Code

The Code Committee of the Takeover Panel published a consultation paper on 5 November 2018 (PCP 2018/2) containing some amendments to the Takeover Code in order to address the potential impending withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union.

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Asset Valuations: Proposed Takeover Code Changes

On 17 October 2018, the Code Committee of the Takeover Panel also published a consultation paper (PCP 2018/1) with proposed changes to the Takeover Code which relate to the manner in which assets are valued in the context of a takeover and the application of Rule 29 of the Code. These changes will come into force on 1 April 2019.

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