Freehills has been advising National Foods in response to takeover bids by San Miguel Corporation and Fonterra since Fonterra made its original bid last year.
The Filipino food and beverage giant San Miguel stepped closer to a successful takeover last week, with a $1.9 billion offer, which saw Fonterra withdraw from the race and National Foods chairman David Crawford write to shareholders urging them to accept the offer. Completion of the takeover will see San Miguel gain access to the dairy market and increase its investment in Australian food manufacturing businesses.
The revised bid is free of all conditions other than a 50 per cent minimum acceptance, and is at the higher end of National Foods’ own valuation range of $6.01 to $6.55.
Freehills provided strategic legal advice in response to the bids by both Fonterra and National Foods, advised on the target’s statement, negotiated the break fee agreements with San Miguel and represented National Foods in Takeovers Panel proceedings. Partner Baden Furphy led the Freehills team.
“We’re very pleased that our client has achieved an optimal outcome in this high profile deal, which heralds further change in the food and beverage landscape in Australia,” Furphy said.
The Freehills team also included Robert Nicholson, Craig Dally and Adam Schwab.