Takeovers Panel dismisses concerns over Foster’s

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 8th September 2011

The Federal Government’s Takeovers Panel has rejected accusations from multinational brewer SABMiller that statements published in Foster’s Group Limited’s full year results were “misleading” and “deceptive”.

SABMiller’s submission to the Takeovers Panel had raised issues about certain forward-looking financial statements and a pro forma net debt in the Foster’s results presentation.

On 17 August 2011, SABMiller announced that it intended to make a conditional off-market takeover offer for all the issued shares in Foster’s.

Acting Counsel for the Takeovers Panel George Durbridge said, “The Panel had some concerns with the Net Debt Statement; however, these concerns were allayed by Foster’s volunteering to make an announcement clarifying the basis for reaching a pro forma net debt figure. Accordingly, the Panel declined to conduct proceedings.”

Following consultation with the Takeovers Panel, Foster’s has clarified its full year results presentation voluntarily through a statement on the company website. Foster’s said it welcomed the Takeover Panel’s decision and “strongly rejected” SABMiller’s allegations.

The Panel will officially publish its reasons for the decision in due course on its website www.takeovers.gov.au