Shareholders in Coopers Brewery have voted in favour of the company's share buyback scheme.

The vote was passed at today's (7 December) EGM, and came a day after Coopers' managing director launched another attack on Lion Nathan's looming bid.

Coopers' proposal to buy up to 15% of its shares at A$260 per share won unanimous support at the meeting. The company is scheduled to hold a second EGM next week to vote on removing Lion's pre-emptive rights to buy shares in Coopers. A vote in favour of taking Lion's rights away would render the company's attempted A$310 per share takeover bid dead.

Separately, Coopers yesterday outlined details of a "campaign of intimidation" run by Lion and its CEO Rob Murray. Coopers MD Dr. Tim Cooper said the campaign was one of "schoolyard bullying".
"Lion Nathan seems prepared to stop at nothing to prevent Coopers shareholders from determining what their constitution says," he said.

"If Lion Nathan's offer was worth accepting, then shareholders would vote against the changes to Coopers constitution and accept the offer, instead of Lion Nathan believing it needs to send dozens of letters and documents to various stakeholders including our auditor, independent expert, directors and others," he added.

"Lion Nathan should now be prepared to let shareholders express their views at this important meeting," he said.

"The issues in the shareholders' eyes are simple - if they want to keep Lion Nathan's bid open on any terms, they will vote against the resolution. If they are not interested in Lion Nathan becoming a shareholder and / or offering for their shares, they will vote for the resolution."

Coopers has a total of 118 shareholders, the vast majority of which are thought to be Coopers family members.