The board of Western Australian bank Goldfields Money has called upon shareholders to reject an acquisition offer by non-bank lender Firstmac, slamming the bid as “inadequate and opportunistic”.
With acceptance of the offer requiring action as stated in the original bidder’s statement, shareholders have been advised to do nothing with respect to their shares. The bank’s directors have cited the following reasons for rejecting the offer:
- They do not believe the offer represents adequate value
- Those accepting the bid may miss out on a higher offer
- Those accepting will not benefit from future growth in the firm
As well as the strategic value attached to Goldfields Money’s ADI licence, the offer price represents a premium of 12% to the closing price of the firm’s shares as of 13 October.
“Your directors believe the strategic value of the ADI licence and the synergies this would provide to a range of potential bidders including Firstmac should be reflected in the premium paid by any bidder,” the board wrote in a Target’s Statement released on the ASX on Friday (3 November).
Goldfields hired an independent expert which concluded that the offer of $1.12 cash per share was “not fair and not reasonable” instead valuing the company’s shares at between $1.27 and $1.39 per share.
With the offer remaining open until 1 December, Firstmac has the ability to increase its offer price up until the last five days of this period.
At present, Goldfields’ three largest shareholders (excluding Firstmac) own 41% of the shares in the firm and have confirmed that they are not accepting the offer at its current price.
If Firstmac obtains at least 90% of all shares in Goldfields, it will gain the right of compulsory acquisition of all remaining shares. The non-bank will also seek to delist Goldfields from the ASX at the conclusion of the acquisition.
has reached out to Firstmac for further comment but failed to obtain a reply prior to print.
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