Canadian dairy processor Saputo has announced that the Foreign Investment Review Board's (FIRB) condition is now satisfied in relation to the takeover offer for Victorian diary, Warrnambool Cheese and Butter.
Warrnambool’s chairman, Terry Richardson said that the company’s board has unanimously recommended that shareholders accept Saputo’s offer in the absence of a superior proposal, and that the approval from the FIRB ‘significantly progresses’ the Canadian processor’s offer.
“The approval by the Australian Treasurer significantly progresses Saputo’s Offer, which is clearly superior to other current proposals,” said Richardson.
“As outlined in our Target’s Statement released early today in response to Saputo's all cash offer, WCB directors unanimously recommend that WCB shareholders accept Saputo’s offer, in the absence of a superior proposal. We believe Saputo’s offer provides more certainty for the future of WCB’s operations and employees, including a strong future competitor for milk supply.”
As it stands, Saputo, Bega Cheese Limited and Murray Goulburn have all made takeover bids for Warrnambool. Bega cheese received the all-clear from the ACCC to pursue its takeover bid however Warrnambool’s board rejected the company’s offer, stating that it was neither fair, nor reasonable, and did not adequately reflect the strategic value of Warrnambool to Bega.
Murray Goulburn’s offer has also been rejected by Warrnambool’s board in favour of Saputo’s bid.