It's likely to be a rough day for shareholders in API (LON:API), as they announce that the protracted company sale process has now fallen through (incidentally just to emphasise, if it's not obvious, where I put in a link, as in the last sentence, this clicks through to the relevant announcement on investegate.co.uk, or to something else relevant, e.g. a previous comment).
This follows an ominous announcement on 25 Jan 2013, when API stated that indicative proposals from potential buyers of the company had been below the then market price of 90p, and also the sales process sounded like it was unlikely to continue. I've been sceptical about this sale process for some time now, as stated in previous comments here. It was taking too long, and the pension deficit was likely to be an impediment to a takeover. Also, risk/reward was all wrong after 25 Jan, with the upside capped at below 90p, yet downside from the process falling through.
API also issues a trading update today, which is a very mild profits warning, saying that results for y/e 31 Mar 2013, "are likely to be marginally below previous management expectations", but, "will demonstrate substantial year on year improvement". The outlook sounds mixed. So I suspect these shares are likely to take another lurch downwards today. There is no dividend yield to cushion the fall either, although clearly they will now need to introduce a dividend, after all paying divis is what companies exist to do! (something that management often forget).
I'm not terribly interested in chasing this one down, unless it gets really cheap, because we now know that it's a company nobody wants to own! Its large shareholders want out (they pressed for the sale process in the first place), and nobody in the trade or private equity seems to value it at a worthwhile premium. I might get interested at 50p, but probably not much higher than that, but let's see where the price settles & then take a view. My commiserations to friends who were in this one - I suspect the damage is done, so if I held then I'd probably park this in the long-term, hasn't really worked out, section of my portfolio, or just dump it & move on.