31 May 1996

Sentry take-over

SENTRY Farming, which manages almost 23,000ha (56,000 acres) of farmland in eastern and southern England, has announced details of its planned takeover of farm management company, Hallsworth.

Shareholders in Hallsworth, which include directors, employees and City investors, will receive Sentry shares worth £1.8m, giving them a 12% stake. Directors are recommending acceptance.

when negotiations with Hallsworth first started. The company was quick to disassociate itself with the BSE problem in March (which hit share values badly for some agri-businesses). And the announcement of record profits in April and the continuing bullish outlook for grain markets has maintained the upward momentum, says company director, Doug Bowers.

The deal has to be ratified at an extraordinary general meeting next month.

Sentry is also planning a 1-for-2 bonus issue to increase the number of shares available and so broaden the spread of shareholders.