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Mon 8 Oct 2007 12:29 AM

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Sainsbury poised to back Qatar bid

Board could recommend Delta Two's $10.6bn bid as early as this week, according to UK newspaper.

The board of J Sainsbury Plc is poised to recommend a 10.6 billion pounds ($21.6 billion) takeover bid from Qatari-backed investment fund Delta Two, possibly as early as this week, according to a newspaper report.

Sainsbury's pension trustees have been placated and Delta Two is expected to have its offer recommended by the board later this week, The Independent on Sunday newspaper said.

However, Delta Two could still alter its bid proposal to improve the terms for the trustees and be certain of getting the bid recommended, according to the Sunday Express newspaper.

The trustees are demanding up to 2 billion pounds from Delta Two, which already owns 25% of Britain's third-biggest grocer, in exchange for backing the bid, the paper said, quoting an unnamed source close to the deal.

Delta Two, which has already tabled a 600 pence-a-share bid, has offered a 1 billion pounds package to protect the scheme but the trustees are holding out for almost double that, the paper said.

J Sainsbury was not immediately available for comment.

Sainsbury shares closed at 580p on Friday, valuing it around 10.2 billion pounds

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