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News 501 views last update:6 Aug 2012

CPF expands Taiwanese operations

Charoen Pokphand Foods (CPF) is acquiring a 32.41% stake of Taiwan's leading agro-industrial and food firm CP Enterprise (Taiwan) Co. for 826 million baht (€17.17m), as part of its ambitious overseas business expansion.

Taipei-listed CPE is a leader in animal feed mills, meat processing and food processing in Taiwan, with total revenue of NT$13.07 billion (€281m) and net profit of NT$211.74 million (€4.46m) last year.
 
According to CPF's president and chief executive officer Adirek Sripratak, the investment in Taiwan will help expand income from CPF's overseas operations.
 
In addition, CPF will utilise its experience to enhance the Taiwanese subsidiary's capability in processed food and swine businesses.
 
Indonesian dispute
In a related development, CP Group said again it is a totally separate body from Central Proteinaprima (CP Prima), the world's largest shrimp producer based in Indonesia and is now involved in a legal battle with its overseas bondholders.
 
The dispute involves a group of international investors who bought a $200-million bond issue, and the banks who acted as the trustee and security agent for the debt.
 
The bonds were issued in 2007 by Red Dragon, controlled by the Chearavanont family.
 
The dispute pits the investors and banks against Red Dragon and three other firms controlled by the family through CP Group chairman Dhanin's elder brother Sumet, all of which own stakes in CP Prima.
 
The other three companies - Regent Central International, Charm Easy and PT Surya Hidup Satwa (SHS) - jointly supported Red Dragon's bonds by pledging their shares in CP Prima to back the issuance. Red Dragon and these companies together controlled 70.3% of CP Prima prior to the company's controversial bond issues.
 
The dispute escalated last year when the value of CP Prima's shares and bonds plunged.
 
Attempts to restructure the debt failed and bond holders ordered Bank of New York Mellon, the trustee, and PT Bank Danamon, the security agent, to transfer some of the shares held as collateral to the bondholders, sparking several lawsuits.
 
Source: Bangkok Post

Dick Ziggers

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