Singapore-based real estate giant Frasers Centrepoint on Wednesday made a surprise Aus$2.59 billion (US$2.4 billion) cash offer for Australia's Australand, as a bidding war broke out.
Frasers offered Aus$4.48 per share for the property developer and office landlord, trumping a share swap bid by Australian rival Stockland last week.
Australand, the owner of Aus$2.4 billion in residential and commercial developments, granted Frasers four weeks to exclusively complete due diligence.
Australand's board said it was a better offer than Stockland's and intended to recommend it to investors unless a superior bid was made.
"The board concluded that the conditional proposal would deliver a compelling value outcome for Australand security-holders and is superior to the final and conditional proposal received from Stockland," chairman Paul Isherwood said.
Australand shares jumped more than six percent on the news and were trading at Aus$4.58 mid-morning.