Shopping centre brand, Intu, which owns Lakeside, is set to be taken over by Hammerson in a £3.4 billion deal which will create the largest property group in the UK.

Hammerson, which also owns the Bullring in Birmingham, has reached a deal with the shopping centre group, which also owns the Trafford Centre in Manchester, which Intu have said will create £21 billion pan-European portfolio - meaning they will be the largest UK group of this type.

Earlier this year, Hammerson, which also has outlets in France and Ireland, announced in February this year that they had 56 per cent reduction on their annual profit compared to the previous year.

But now, in a bold move, the organisation has purchased Intu at a rate of  roughly £2.54 per share (253.9p) - which in total equates to £3.4 billion.

As the closing price of Intu shares came to £1.99, this means Hammerson are offering a premium of 27 per cent. So, if you own ten shares in Intu, the total worth of your shares will increase from £19.90 to £25.39.

After the deal has been made, Hammerson shareholders will own approximately 55 per cent of the issued share capital in the new 'Enlarged Group' while Intu shareholders will own the remainder.

Supporting the move is David Atkins, Chief Executive of Hammerson, who said: “This marks an exciting milestone in the history of Hammerson.

"Bringing together the high-quality portfolios of both companies establishes Hammerson as a larger, leading European retail REIT, enhances shareholder returns and supports opportunities for long-term growth.

"The acquisition creates a leading pan-European platform of desirable retail and leisure destinations which are better positioned to serve the needs of our retailers, excite our customers and support our partners and communities.

"I hold Intu’s high-quality centres in high regard and I look forward to working with a strengthened team to enhance the performance of our entire portfolio.” 

Also in favour of the merger is John Strachan, Chairman of Intu and proposed Senior Independent Director of the 'Enlarged Group'.

He said: "A combination of both Intu and Hammerson will create a more resilient, diversified and stronger group that we believe will benefit all our stakeholders.

"Intu offers high-quality retail and leisure destinations in the UK and Spain, which when merged with Hammerson’s own top-quality assets in the UK, in France and in Ireland, present a highly attractive proposition for retailers and shoppers in Europe’s leading cities.

"I am proud of the financial and operational success that Intu’s management team has delivered and pleased to see that the intu brand will continue.” 

Although the group will now be called Hammerson plc, Intu will still be keeping their brand.