AUS: Lion Nathan set to walk away from Coopers bid
Lion Nathan will not extend its bid for Coopers Brewery beyond the approaching deadline.
The Trans-Tasman brewer and wine producer said today (16 March) that it would not extend its A$420m (US$317m) bid at acquiring the family-owned company, having gained just 0.7% of Coopers.
Earlier this year, Lion resumed its quest for Coopers by stretching the deadline from 20 January to 20 March.
The bid for Coopers looked to have been defeated in December, when Coopers shareholders voted to strip Lion Nathan of its pre-emptive rights, effectively blocking it from buying any shares.
In January, however, Lion chief executive Rob Murray said that legal action was under way that could keep the company's bid afloat.
Last week, Lion Nathan had to issue a statement to the Australian Stock Exchange clarifying comments made by the president of major stakeholder Kirin Brewery. The company said that, despite saying that Kirin would consider raising its stake "when the time is right," Kirin "has confirmed that it currently has no intention of increasing its stake in Lion Nathan, which stands at 46% of issued share capital."
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