The bottled water company, Neverfail, currently the subject of a takeover bid by the soft drinks group, Coca-Cola Amatil, has said that an independent report looking into the bid has concluded that it is neither fair nor reasonable.

The report has been compiled by Grant Samuel & Associates, who said the value of Neverfail is in the range of A$2.49 to A$2.80 a share, against CCA's hostile bid price of A$2.25 a share.

The report also suggested that Neverfail's assets could be attractive to another bidder. There has been speculation that both Nestle and Danone were considering a counter-bid though this has not been confirmed.

While Neverfail is adamant that CCA's bid undervalues the company, last week CCA suggested that it was reviewing its offer price after Neverfail issued a downgraded profit forecast for 2003. Meanwhile, CCA has announced that it is to acquire the bulk water supplier, Peats Ridge Spring.