APA makes a takeover proposal to acquire AusNet Services

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By David Winning

SYDNEY – APA Group has set a one week deadline for AusNet Services Ltd. to allow due diligence access after stating that he was prepared to override an existing buyout proposal made by Brookfield Asset Management Inc.

APA said it made a non-binding offer to acquire AusNet for A $ 9.96 billion ($ 7.22 billion), or A $ 2.60 per share using a mixture of cash and its own shares. The implied offer is higher than Brookfield’s Aus $ 2.50 per share offer, which AusNet said on Monday it intends to recommend to shareholders.

APA said it initially approached AusNet about a deal valued at A $ 2.32 per share on September 1, and discussed the offer directly with State Grid Corp. of China, the second largest shareholder of AusNet, beforehand.

“APA understands that Singapore Power was arguing that APA and AusNet were engaging in discussions to determine if a transaction could be agreed,” the company said. Singapore Power owns around a third of the shares of AusNet.

According to a regulatory filing, the APA said it informed AusNet on September 16 that it intended to make a revised proposal.

“APA is disappointed that AusNet has claimed to enter an exclusivity period with Brookfield for effectively eight weeks, despite AusNet’s knowledge of APA’s revised and potentially superior proposal,” he said.

APA listed several reasons why it thinks the revised proposal is better than Brookfield’s offer, including a higher price tag and the ability for AusNet investors to profit from the business combination through its own listing on the. Australian Securities Exchange.

“Unlike many OECD countries, Australia does not have a locally owned and controlled energy utility with the capabilities across critical energy infrastructure and the size and strength to do so. to partner with government and the community to ensure the energy transition, ”said APA Executive Director Rob Wheals.

APA said it plans to raise around A $ 1.5 billion in new equity to fund a deal if terms can be agreed, and that the capital raising will be guaranteed.

“The superior proposal is conditional, among other things, on AusNet’s confirmation by Tuesday, September 28 that it has granted due diligence access, completed a targeted due diligence review and conclusion of an act of satisfactory implementation of the program “, added APA.

Write to David Winning at [email protected]



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