09/02/2011 - 15:08

Independence launches $532m takeover bid

09/02/2011 - 15:08

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Independence Group has launched a friendly all scrip takeover offer for base metals miner Jabiru Metals, in a deal that values the target at $532 million.

Independence Group has launched a friendly all scrip takeover offer for base metals miner Jabiru Metals, in a deal that values the target at $532 million.

Under terms of the bid, Jabiru shareholders will receive one Independence share for every 8 Jabiru shares held, creating a combined group with pro forma market capitalisation of around $1.5 billion.

The Jabiru board has unanimously recommended its shareholders accept the offer.

Independence also said it intended to enter private treaty arrangements with Jabiru option holders to acquire or cancel their options in exchange for Independence shares.

Jabiru's managing director, Gary Comb, will join the Independence board if the bid is successful.

Independence also announced today it had acquired a 10.48 per cent interest in Jabiru from its major shareholder Metals X, which has also agreed to support the takeover.

Mr Comb said the combination of the two miners would provide significant strategic and financial benefits.

"The Board of Jabiru considers the transaction to be a compelling opportunity for Jabiru to capture a premium for their shareholding in Jabiru whilst maintaining an ongoing exposure to an exciting suite of assets held by the combined group," Mr Comb said in a statement to the ASX.

"The board of Jabiru has full confidence in Chris Bonwick and the Independence team to drive the projects forward and create significant value for all shareholders."

The offer is subject to a 90 per cent minimum acceptance condition and will close March 28.

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