Engineering group TT called off plans last week to acquire Silvermines, the electronic equipment group.
The company had been stalking Silvermines for some time and built up a 6% stake. As bid rumours swept the market, however, TT sold its stake to an investment trust.
TT chairman John Newman was unavailable for comment on the withdrawal. But sources close to the company said TT wants to focus its electronics operations on the circuit board businesses it acquired this year with Scottish-based Prestwick Holdings.
TT remains keen to make acquisitions, however, and still has up to £150m for the right deal, the source said.
Silvermines is looking for acquisitions following the sale of the UK manufacturing and distribution parts of its security division.
TT had an unblemished record of acquisitions until it launched a hostile bid for Shrewsbury-based Hall Engineering earlier this year.
The bid was successfully seen off by John Sword, Hall’s chief executive, who then took the company into private ownership.