Taj parent abandons bid for Orient-Express

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The parent company of Taj Hotels has abandoned a $1.2 billion hostile bid for Orient-Express Hotels after more than a year.

Indian Hotels Company, part of the giant Tata Group, withdrew after taking into account all factors, including the current economic environment and other opportunities and priorities.

Indian made an unsolicited bid in October last year to acquire Orient-Express, in which it has a 7% holding.

Orient-Express, which owns the Hotel Cipriani in Venice, rejected the bid a month later, saying it undervalued the business.

Indian Hotels' quarterly net loss widened to 3 billion rupees ($48 million) for the three months to September 30, compared with a net loss of 63.6 million rupees in the same period last year, after writing down the value of its investments in overseas assets including Orient-Express. Net sales rose 3% to 3.9 billion rupees.

Indian Hotels said it has reduced the value of its holding in Taj International Hotels, the holding company for its international entities including Orient-Express, by 2.87 billion rupees.

The Indian company has bought several overseas properties, including the Pierre in New York, but they have not tended to perform as well as its domestic operations, Reuters