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LONDON-Heron Corp. has dropped plans to bid for housebuilder Crest Nicholson Plc because it has been unable to gain enough information to make a firm offer.

“Due to the continued absence of access to information on Crest Nicholson, Heron has no alternative but to confirm that it will not make an offer for Crest Nicholson within the next six months,” Heron says in a statement. Takeover speculation surrounding Crest Nicholson began after Heron, run by British businessman Gerald Ronson, gradually built up a stake of more than 2% in the group. In March, Heron said it could make an offer for Crest valuing the company at between 345 and 430 pence a share. An offer of 430 pence a share would have valued Crest at around euro 703 million ($912 million).

Crest had argued that Heron’s offer undervalued the company, and Britain’s Takeover Panel had given Heron until May 4 to decide whether or not to make an actual bid. Heron still has a stake of 23.4% in Crest Nicholson, and the property group says it reserves the right to come back with a new offer in six months’ time.

Crest says in a statement that discussions with Heron, the company’s largest shareholder, had been “cordial” although Heron declined to increase its offer price.

“Crest is a company that has performed consistently and strongly in recent years. It has a strong landbank of high quality and above average length which positions Crest well for the future,” Crest chairman John Matthews says.

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