LONDON-Locally-based Capital Shopping Group, having today turneddown a $6.66 per share informal takeover bid fromIndianapolis-based Simon Property Group, did make a smallconcession to the US-based mall REIT. The CSC board meetingto approvethe $1.2 billion purchase of the local Trafford CentreMall, which investor Simon opposes, has been postponeduntil January.

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Simon, a 5.6% owner in CSC, said in a letter to the local firmthat the price for the 1.9 million square foot mall is too great,and has threatened to sell its stock if the purchase is made.Similar to a poker-hand showdown, board chairman and CEO DavidSimon has sent letters both asking for the sale to stop, and, todayoffered the non-binding takeover bid – in an apparent attempt tosee if the CSC board will back off of the Trafford sale.

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The board did blink, somewhat. Though the company issued astatement rejecting the Simon offer as too low for a company thatowns 13 regional shopping centers in the United Kingdom, CSC agreedto move the Trafford approval from its planned Dec. 20extraordinary general to next month. “The date of the adjourned EGMis now expected to be in late January 2011, ahead of the long stopdate under the Trafford Centre acquisition of Jan. 31. Unless Simonprovides to CSC, in advance of the adjourned EGM date, a firmproposal that the board would be willing to recommend, the boardexpects to continue to recommend the Trafford Centre acquisition,”said CSC in a statement today. Shares of the company closed at$6.20 Tuesday.

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CSC said in its statement that it rejects the recent informaldeal because it is not a legally-binding offer per British law, andquestions why Simon needs due diligence time. In return, DavidSimon said in a letter that CSC has not cooperated with requestsfor due diligence.

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The Trafford purchase would enable CSC to own four of the topsix shopping centers in the United Kingdom, said the company in astatement. “The board believes that CSC’s portfolio will generatelong-term attractive returns for shareholders significantlysuperior to Simon’s cash proposal,” the company said in today’sstatement. The company said it has been advised against the Simondeal by Merrill Lynch International and UBS Limited.

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In a letter dated today, David Simon said he would rather aformal offer be made with the consent of the CSC board. “We believethat we should work together to announce a recommended offer,” hesaid in today’s letter,” and would urge you to listen to calls fromyour shareholders – many of whom we have spoken to – opposing theTrafford Centre transaction.” Simon has appointed Citi, Lazard andEvercore as financial advisors for this offer, and Watchtell Liptonas legal advisors.

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For the second time this year, Simon appears to be getting acold shoulder from a takeover offer. The REIT spent the first halfof the year in a frustrating but failed takeover attempt ofChicago-based General Growth Properties.

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