AUSTRALIA: Fosters sets out plans for pub sale
The company plans to sell more than 100 pubs through an initial public offering to raise over A$1 billion.
The company will split its Australian Leisure & Hospitality division into two vehicles, a property trust that will offer securities and acquire the group's freehold properties and a separate listed company, Australian Leisure & Hospitality Group.
A prospectus for the initial public offer will be released in early September with the transaction closing late October.
Foster's said it had not decided how to send the money. However, it did not rule out a major acquisition fuelling speculation it would seek to increase the scale of its wine operations, with an acquisition in either the US or at home in Australia. Kendal-Jackson in the US and Southcorp were both seen as possible targets.
If the money is not used on an acquisition Foster's may use it to buy back shares or reduce debt.
"In the absence of appropriate value-creating investment opportunities, the group will use the proceeds for debt reduction, a return to shareholders or a combination of these options," the company said.
A revised assessment by Southcorp's independent expert has valued the company's shares closer to the bid value offered by Foster's Group....
Australian liquor giant Foster's bid for winemaker Southcorp is gathering momentum....
As one takeover story trundles on, another one has just moved up a gear....
The chief executive of Foster's believes the global premium wine industry is on the upturn....
Foster's Group Ltd is expected to announce that it is lifting its offer for fellow Australian Southcorp, transforming three months of corporate hostility into a friendly takeover....
Shares in Southcorp and Foster's have been halted from trading, pending an announcement....
Southcorp's share price has dropped below the offer price made by Foster's for the first time today (18 April)....
Foster's Group is considering upping its bid for Southcorp prior to extending its offer once again....
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