10/07/2008 - 08:27

Macmahon extends Ausdrill offer

10/07/2008 - 08:27

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Takeover target Ausdrill Ltd has fired back at Macmahon Holdings Ltd's claims that its share price is being propped up by its $400 million bid, saying its bidder had so far managed to secure 0.31 per cent of Ausdrill shares.

Macmahon extends Ausdrill offer


Takeover target Ausdrill Ltd has fired back at Macmahon Holdings Ltd's claims that its share price is being propped up by its $400 million bid, saying its bidder had so far managed to secure 0.31 per cent of Ausdrill shares.

Ausdrill managing director Ron Sayers today continued to call Macmahon's takeover offer of 1.45 shares for each Ausdrill share "inadequate" and questioned why Macmahon would continue with the bid.

"To date, Macmahon has received acceptances for just 0.31% of Ausdrill shares. Ausdrill has continued to trade above the offer price, confirming the inadequacy of Macmahon's offer," Mr Sayers said.

"I will not accept the offer, my fellow directors will not accept the offer and a number of our larger shareholders do not intend to accept the offer.

"Ausdrill shareholders do not need more time to consider the offer as it is clearly inadequate and most unlikely that the minimum acceptance condition will be satisfied."

The comments follow Macmahon's extension to the takeover offer until August 15.

Earlier today Macamhon said Ausdrill share price is being propped up by on-market purchases from its managing director Ron Sayers and its $400 million takeover offer for the company.

Macmahon chairman Richard Carter said the company's takeover offer and share purchases by Mr Sayers have provided support for Ausdrill's share price.

"This brings into question the prospects for Ausdrill's share price in the absence of the Macmahon offer and share purchases by Mr Sayers," Mr Carter said in a letter to Ausdrill shareholders.

Macmahon, which is 14.6 per cent owned by Leighton Holdings Ltd, said that 40 per cent of share purchases in Ausdrill during the period from June 16 to July 3 had been acquired by Mr Sayers.

Ausdrill directors control more than 20 per cent of the company, with Mr Sayers the largest shareholder with about 14.29 per cent of the group.

Macmahon also questioned Ausdrill's decision not to provide its shareholders with the benefit of an independent expert's report into the takeover and the failure to publicly disclose the size of its order book.

Macmahon is targeting Ausdrill to gain a greater foothold in Africa and create a diversified mining contracting and civil construction company, with a market capitalisation of about $1.4 billion.







 

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