John Wood Group’s private equity suitor has dropped its £1.7 billion proposed takeover plans for an Aberdeen oil and gas engineering firm.

US firm Apollo Management said it would not be making an offer for Wood Group just two days before the May 17 deal deadline.

Apollo had put forward five bid proposals, with the fifth for 240p a share in cash, valuing Wood Group at around £1.66 billion.

Wood Group, which only decided to engage in talks with Apollo last month after rejecting the first four approaches, said its board “remains confident in Wood’s strategic direction and long-term prospects”.

It said: “Following a transformative year in 2022, including new executive leadership and a new strategy, Wood is well placed to deliver substantial value for shareholders.”

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Wood added: “The board is grateful for the substantial engagement of its shareholders and the support of its customers and employees throughout this process.

"The management team looks forward to continuing to deliver against the strategy set out in November 2022.”

Wood provides consultation, management of assets and engineering services for the energy and materials sector.

It employs around 35,000 people, having been founded by Ian Wood in 1982 when it split from JW Holdings, Scotland's largest fishing company.