AUS: Lion Nathan, Coopers come to legal blows
Shareholders in Coopers Brewery could be missing out on the deal of a lifetime, according to lawyers for takeover bidder Lion Nathan. Directors at the family-owned brewery have rejected Lion Nathan's offer of A$260 a share, but lawyers have warned that another bid for Coopers does not appear to be forthcoming.
The two companies are in a Federal Court in Melbourne this week, with Lion Nathan seeking an injunction to stop an extraordinary general meeting on 20 October which will vote on changing Coopers' constitution. The current arrangement allows Lion Nathan to acquire company shares that have been put up for sale and not subsequently purchased by either existing shareholders or Coopers' superannuation fund manager, AMP.
Although Federal Court judge Alan Goldberg said yesterday (3 October) that the meeting should go ahead, he warned that shareholders at Coopers needed to be "properly informed" of all pertinent information and the consequences of voting at the meeting.
Neil Young, QC, appearing for Lion Nathan, warned that Coopers' 117 shareholders had not been told that, if they voted to remove Lion Nathan's pre-emptive right, then there was little chance of anyone else offering as much as A$260 per share.
Dick Whitington, QC, counsel for Coopers, said, however, that striking out Lion's pre-emptive rights would remove its ability to stymie rival takeover offers for Coopers and thus improve the chances of Coopers shareholders receiving a premium bid.
After some less than successful diversification in recent years, Lion Nathan is focusing its attentions back on beer and winning the approval of analysts in the process. The company looks set to gain ...
Integrating spirits, wine and beer has proved problematic for major drinks groups over the years but expansionary moves by the two major Australian brewers, Foster's Group and Lion Nathan, suggest tha...
Lion Nathan has appointed a new non-executive director....
Coopers Brewery is fighting the takeover attempt from fellow Australian brewer Lion Nathan....
Lion Nathan today announced that it intends to make an off-market offer for Coopers Brewery Ltd (Coopers). The offer of A$260 per share in cash values Coopers at A$352m....
Lion Nathan has received further assurances that it is not about to be taken over....
Lion Nathan has played down speculation that it may be the subject of a takeover....
Lion Nathan has said it is on target to reach its full-year net profit after tax forecast for 2005 of between A$230m and A$235m before one-off charges....
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