Olam offer overtakes LDC in takeover battle for Namoi

Grain Central, May 8, 2024

THE TUG-OF-WAR for control of Namoi Cotton continues as Olam Agri ups its offer for the second time, surpassing LDC’s most recent offer.

In a release to the ASX today, Olam Agri announced that it had increased its off-market takeover offer for Namoi Cotton to 70 cents per share, 3c higher than a bid received from LDC yesterday.

This figure matches Olam’s May 2 highest bid but removes the conditions placed on the offer.

The company’s previous offer was 66c per share, which could be increased to 70c if it obtains a relevant interest in at least 90 percent of the Namoi shares.

LDC currently owns 17pc of Namoi Cotton shares and prevented Olam from reaching the 90pc ownership threshold required for the highest offer to be valid.

“The offer price applies regardless of whether or not Olam obtains a relevant interest in at least 90pc of Namoi Shares before the end of the offer period,” Olam said in a statement to the ASX.

“The offer conditions are otherwise the same limited ones as those announced by Olam on 2 May 2024.”

These conditions include Olam obtaining a relevant interest in at least 50.1pc of Namoi shares; receipt of regulatory approvals from FIRB and ACCC; and no prescribed occurrences occurring in relation to Namoi before the end of the offer period.

The ACCC is currently conducting an inquiry into Olam Agri’s proposal to acquire Namoi Cotton.

Public submissions closed on 29 April, and an announcement of ACCC’s findings is expected on 4 July.

Olam Agri has flagged that it will lodge a Bidder’s Statement with the ASIC, Namoi and ASX with the next 24 hours, which will include more detailed information about the offer and its intentions regarding the future of Namoi, its operations and employees.

Namoi’s largest shareholder, Samuel Terry Asset Management, has flagged that it intends to accept Olam’s latest offer, in the in the absence of a superior proposal.

STAM owns a 25pc share in Namoi and has continued to support the highest-value offer.

In a statement to the ASX, Namoi has told shareholders to take no action in respect of the current Olam offer.

It noted that LDC’s competing offer will not close until June 7, and may be extended.

The statement said a report into LDC’s current takeover offer and independent directors’ recommendation will be outlined in the Target’s Statement provided to Namoi shareholders in due course.

Based in Singapore, Olam has operated as a cotton grower, ginner and merchant in Australia since 2007 through its ownership of Queensland Cotton.

Source: ASX, Namoi




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