LONDON: British engineer Amec is looking at Swiss-based rival Foster Wheeler among a number of potential acquisition targets, but is not currently in talks with the company, a source close to the matter said.
Amec shares were down more than 3 percent in morning trade after a report in the Times newspaper said the firm was interested in Foster Wheeler, which has a market value of $2.8 billion.
A spokesman for Amec said the company did not comment on market rumors. Foster Wheeler did not return calls seeking comment.
Amec, which has a market capitalization of $5.6 billion, has repeatedly said it is on the look out for acquisitions in the past few months and has said it will consider returning cash to shareholders this quarter if no deal is forthcoming.
Amec had a 680 million pound ($1.1 billion) approach for UK peer Kentz rejected by the target company’s board and opted not to make a formal bid.
Kentz and Foster Wheeler both have strong construction divisions and are active in liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects.