NETHERLANDS/SINGAPORE: Heineken makes "final offer" for Asia Pacific Breweries
The fight for Tiger could be nearing its end
Heineken has submitted a "final offer" to Fraser & Neave for its stake in Asia Pacific Breweries in a bid to take full control of the Tiger brewer.
The Dutch group announced late Friday (17 August) that it has raised its offer to SGD53 per share - SGD5.4bn (US$4.3bn) - for F&N's 39.7% total stake in APB. Heineken's inital offer for APB, made last month, was for SGD50 per share.
The new offer also includes an extra SGD163m for F&N's stake in non-APB assets. If the deal goes through, Heineken will then make a mandatory offer for the remaining 18.4% of APB it does not own. APB is currently run as a JV between the Dutch brewer and F&N.
Heineken's chief executive, Jean-François van Boxmeer, said: "I am pleased that F&N's board has agreed that our increased offer, which is now final, represents excellent value for F&N and APB shareholders."
If the deal does not complete within 120 days, Heineken will receive a SGD56m break fee from F&N, the brewer said.
The F&N board has agreed to recommend the deal to its shareholders and will not "solicit, engage in discussions or accept any alternative offer or proposal" for its interests in APB, Heineken said.
The battle to gain control has been seen as a tussle between the Dutch brewer and ThaiBev, run by Thai billionaire Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi.
The Chang brewer has been steadily building its stake in F&N and last week upped its share to 26.4%, making it the conglomerate's largest shareholder. Separately, Kindest Place Groups, a company with family links to the Chang brewer, has submitted a SGD55 per share offer for F&N's 7.3 direct stake in APB.
However, analysts Nomura previously said Heineken only requires a 50% majority approval from F&N shareholders for its bid to be successful.
Heineken said it expects the deal with F&N to complete in the fourth quarter of 2012 and no later than 15 December.
Heineken has a "low appetite" for China's mainstream beer sector and will continue to concentrate on the premium end of the market, the head of the Dutch brewer has said....
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