Finnish competition authorities have approved the sale of 51% of shares of Suomen Rehu by Lännen Tehtaat, but denied the sale of Avena Nordic Grain to SOK subsidiary Hankkija-Maatalous.
On January 19, 2007 Lännen Tehtaat plc and SOK subsidiary Hankkija-Maatalous
Oy signed a share-transaction agreement whereby 51% of the shares in Suomen Rehu
Ltd and Avena Nordic Grain Oy would be transferred to the ownership of
cooperative Hankkija-Maatalous Oy.
At the beginning of March
the competition authorities decided that the further investigation of the merger
notification lodged by Hankkija-Maatalous was necessary.
The merger of the grain trading operations of Avena Nordic Grain
with the grain trading division of Hankkija-Maatalous is thought to create a too
strong market position for Hankkija-Maatalous in Finland.
The parties to
the sale have decided that Avena will not be included in the sale. The
competition authorities are continuing their investigation.
The shift of
the majority shareholding of Suomen Rehu Ltd (320 employees) will go ahead. The
enterprise value of the business operations of Suomen Rehu has been agreed at €
The price for the 51% of the shareholding in the company to
be sold is about € 24 million. The purchaser will also assume responsibility for
the net debts of Suomen Rehu at the moment when the closing takes
The sale of the majority shareholding in Suomen Rehu is expected
to generate a profit of about € 6 million.
Hankkija-Maatalous has a
purchasing option to buy the remaining 49% shares of Suomen Rehu, which can be
effectuated at least 15 months after closing of the current deal.