TUESDAY 25TH JANUARY 2000; It's the Waiting that Gets You...
The press comment is quite positive about our document, although there is little comment in terms of our growth opportunities and the strength of the businesses. The focus is first of all on the greater cash returns to shareholders, which are seen as better probably than anything the bidders can offer. The results are also well received as evidence that perhaps we are becoming less accident prone and capable of delivering against our promises.
However, there is still a fundamental assumption that the Scots will come back with bigger final offers. The battle is far from over, and the general view seems to be that the end result is now very finely balanced. This will be one hell of an escape if we do manage it and Ron et al will deserve every penny of their salaries!