F&C Asset Management has confirmed that BMO Financial Group is looking to acquire the firm.
BMO has offered 120p in cash per ordinary share, a significant premium to 93.5p they closed on 24 January.
Following the news, F&C's stock surged by 25% to stand at 116.3p at 3.30pm having been as high as 119p at some point in the session.
F&C stated that it was in 'advanced discussions' with BMO, which is a division of the Bank of Montreal, and was 'likely to recommend a firm offer at the offer price'.
Edward Bramson (pictured) stood down as chairman of F&C last summer, having taken control of the group in 2011 and embarked on a major strategic overhaul, which saw a number of jobs axed in an aggressive cost-cutting programme.
F&C has suffered substantial outflows in recent months, with the group's assets under management declining by 2.4% to £90.1 billion in the three months to 30 September 2013 alone. The firm ran £100 billion in 2011.