Mergers & acquisitions

Roctest's Corvis Shares Draw Suitor

Corvis Corp. (Nasdaq: CORV) shares are way off their 52-week high, making them that much more attractive as an investment. At least that's the way the Solidarity Fund of the Quebec Federation of Labor, a Montreal venture fund, sees it.

Since Oct 31, Solidarity has made two takeover offers to Roctest Ltd. (Toronto: RTT.TO), a fiber optic instruments maker that owns 1.9 million Corvis shares.

If Solidarity does succeed in acquiring Roctest, which is pending shareholder approval, the VC will have an indirect stake of as much as five percent in Corvis.

Roctest officials are cautioning shareholders to hold off on making a decision until a final offer is circulated, according to a Reuters report. Solidarity already owns about 31 percent of Roctest. Roctest officials say the latest takeover offer of $46 million is too low, citing analysis done by Samson Belair/Deloitte & Touche.

Roctest’s stake in Corvis is worth around $24.8 million, based on Corvis’s stock price of about $21 a share.

In early March, Light Reading reported that investors who bought shares of Roctest were getting a back door into Corvis’s coming IPO (see Investors Find Route into Corvis). Shares of Roctest, which traded around $20 after Corvis went public, have slipped to around $8.

In early October, Roctest demonstrated why its Corvis holdings are so enviable. At that time it sold 70,000 common shares of Corvis for an average price of $63 a share, giving the firm total proceeds of $4.4 million.

Roctest was contacted for this article but referred us to its banker, who has not returned calls. Solidarity did not return calls requesting comment.

-- Phil Harvey, senior editor, Light Reading http://www.lightreading.com

skurl 12/4/2012 | 7:15:59 PM
re: Roctest's Corvis Shares Draw Suitor How did roctest sell corvis shares? Were they not subject to the 180 day lockup period??
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