SINGAPORE: ThaiBev raises stake in Fraser & Neave to 26.2%
Chang brewer ThaiBev is nearing a 30% stake in F&N, which would force it to make a mandatory takeover offer
ThaiBev has upped its stake in Singapore conglomerate Fraser & Neave to 26.2%, according to a regulatory filing.
Fraser & Neave confirmed in a statement to the Singapore Stock Exchange yesterday (13 August) that the Chang brewer has raised its share in the group from 24.1% to 26.2%. ThaiBev would be forced into a mandatory takeover offer if its stake in F&N reached 30%.
The latest move increases the intensity of the battle between ThaiBev and Heinken for Tiger brewer, Asia Pacific Breweries, a JV between the Dutch brewer and F&N.
Earlier today, ThaiBev confirmed it has completed its acquisition of a 22% stake in F&N, after an agreement was made last month.
Meanwhile, a group with family links to ThaiBev, Kindest Place Groups, is awaiting an answer from F&N after it submitted a SGD55 per share offer last week to buy the Singapore group's 7.3% direct stake in APB. F&N has a deadline of this Thursday (16 August) to respond.
Earlier this month, Heinken had a SGD50 per share offer for F&N's entire stake in APB approved by the Singapore conglomerate. However, F&N is awaiting shareholder approval for the deal.
Analysts Nomura said it believes Heineken would prefer not to have ThaiBev as an "ongoing minority" within APB as it could restrict how the company is managed. "We would expect the company to raise its APB bid from the current SGD50 to at least match Thai Bev at SGD55," it said in a note yesterday.
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