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Winning bid for British Energy will have to rise to £16 bln

Bidders for British Energy will have to boost their offers by 40% to £16 billion to have a chance of capturing the nuclear power firm, analysts said last night.

Evolution Securities analyst Lakis Athanasiou said: “Current bids for British Energy are around 700p per share. This undervalues rising energy costs as well as the potential to build a range of new nuclear sites on its land. The firm is easily worth over £10 per share.” Other analysts said that big European power firms including Germany’s RWE and E.ON were waiting to try to come in with knock-out bids, either on their own or as part of a consortium.

Meanwhile, it emerged yesterday that British Gas-owner Centrica was drawing up plans for a solo bid but analysts were questioning whether Centrica could win a bidding war.

Late last week, it was reported that France’s EDF had offered just under 700p a share for the business. British Energy is well placed to capitalize on plans for the next generation of nuclear power stations, because it owns the sites they are likely to be built on (City A.M.)