09/10/2014 - 15:54

Panel clears Aspen Parks takeover

09/10/2014 - 15:54

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Aspen Group will secure majority ownership of Aspen Parks Property Fund, following the Takeover Panel’s rejection of Discovery Holiday Parks’ applications for a declaration of unacceptable circumstances.

Panel clears Aspen Parks takeover
Aspen chief executive Clem Salwin.

Aspen Group will secure majority ownership of Aspen Parks Property Fund, following the Takeover Panel’s rejection of Discovery Holiday Parks’ applications for a declaration of unacceptable circumstances.

Sunsuper-owned Discovery submitted two applications to the Panel concerned with the Aspen Group managed property fund’s entitlement offer.

Aspen Group announced in August that it would fully underwrite a $39.9 million entitlement offer by its 12.5 per cent owned APPF, and intended to subscribe for its full entitlement.

Following completion of the entitlement offer, Aspen Group’s interest in APPF would increase to 40 per cent.

Discovery’s concerns surrounding the control effect that would result from Aspen’s participation in the entitlement offer follow the company’s $217.3 million offer to acquire APPF assets.

Aspen rejected the proposal but did not disclose it to shareholders until its October 3 announcement confirming the group would take up its full entitlement.

APPF cited the Independent Board Committee’s decision that the offer did not provide shareholders with sufficient value or certainty.

Discovery’s application to the Panel also outlined whether Aspen should have disclosed the control effect of the entitlement offer and whether the committee gave due consideration to the offer.

The offer was Aspen’s third in recent months, with unsolicited approaches from Ingenia Communities Group in June and August.

Ingenia proposed to acquire Aspen’s 12.5 per cent equity interest in APPF and management rights of the fund for $5 million, and later proposed a 100 per cent all scrip acquisition of APPF securities which was also rejected.

APPF reserved the right to cancel the entitlement offer in the event that it received a compelling and certain proposal to acquire all securities.

At the request of the Takeover Panel, the timetable for the issue of entitlement offer and subscription shortfall securities was extended by two days to October 10.

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