Tuesday, August 14, 2012

OCBC finalises sale of stakes in F&N, APB

SINGAPORE: OCBC Bank and its units have finalised the sale of their stakes in Fraser & Neave (F&N) and Asia Pacific Breweries (APB) to Thai Beverage and Kindest Place Groups.

In a statement to the Singapore Exchange (SGX), OCBC said "the parties have agreed to effect the sales and purchases today."

Under the deal with OCBC and its units, ThaiBev, controlled by Thai billionaire Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi, purchased a 22 per cent stake in F&N, while Kindest Place, owned by Mr Charoen's son-in-law, acquired an 8.6 per cent stake in APB.

ThaiBev has also been gradually accumulating its interest in F&N in recent weeks.

The company said it holds a 26.4 per cent stake in F&N, according to its statement to the SGX on Tuesday.

This latest move is likely to intensify ThaiBev's fight with Heineken for the control of APB.

As the single largest shareholder of F&N, ThaiBev is likely to have a greater say in how F&N responds to the bid from Dutch brewer Heineken to acquire F&N's interests in APB.

Heineken had made earlier an offer of S$5.1 billion (US$4.1 billion) to purchase F&N's entire stake in APB, the maker of Tiger beer.

Earlier this month, F&N's board recommended that its shareholders accept Heineken's offer of S$50 a share for F&N's stake in APB.

The deal was met last week by an unsolicited offer from Kindest Place to buy F&N's direct 7.3 per cent interest in APB at S$55 a share.

F&N has until Thursday to respond to the offer.

View the original article here

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