News 212 views last update:6 Aug 2012

Ridley rejects offer from GrainCorp

Australian compound feed manufacturer Ridley Corporation is campaigning against GrainCorp's hostile takeover offer, saying it is miserly and opportunistic.

GrainCorp's offer in a share exchange valued Ridley's shares at AU$ 1.39 when it was made on May 16, or at AU$1.25 last Thursday just before the Bidder's Statement was lodged.

Ridley's major shareholder, Investors Mutual, has already made an agreement with GrainCorp that would deliver 19% of Ridley shares.

Ridley chairman John Keniry said they could offer shareholders better value by pursuing the restructure announced after a recent strategic review.

He said the offer undervalued Ridley shares and would expose shareholders to the vagaries of fluctuating wheat harvests, which had recently been affected by drought.
US-part also for sale
Ridley had also decided to sell its North American interests, and "discovered" surplus land worth about AU$80 million, which would be valued at 27¢ a share.

In the Bidder's Statement, GrainCorp chairman Don Taylor said the offer for Ridley was "consistent with GrainCorp's vision to be Australasia's leading handler and supplier of agriproducts and bulk products".

According to GrainCorp, a merged entity would have a market capitalisation of more than $1 billion.

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