Strong Support for Frucor Beverages Group Ltd
Frucor Beverages Group Ltd (Frucor Beverages) (ASX: FRU, NZSE: FRU), the designer beverages company today announced that widespread international and domestic support for its successful global offering had resulted in the offer being over-subscribed.
Trading in Frucor Beverages ordinary shares on the NZSE is expected to commence on a conditional basis at 10.30am Wellington time and on the ASX 10.30am Sydney time on Tuesday 13 June 2000. The code for the Frucor Beverages Ordinary Shares on the NZSE and the ASX will be FRU.
Frucor Beverages chairman, Simon Pillar, said strong support shown by retail and institutional investors in Frucor Beverages was an endorsement of the company, its brands and future strategy.
“The demand for Frucor Beverages by some of the world's largest institutional investors, in what can only be described as very challenging markets, is particularly pleasing.
"Investors responded positively to Frucor Beverages because of its proven ability to create strong consumer brands with demonstrated longevity, strong cashflow and exceptional growth profile, supported by the leadership of a quality management team," said Mr Pillar.
125,000,000 ordinary shares are to be listed on the New Zealand and Australian Stock Exchanges at NZ$ 1.50 or Aust. $1.20. Following the offer, new shareholders will own 50.1% of Frucor Beverages. Retail investors have subscribed for approximately 33% of the offer, with domestic and international institutions being allocated 67% following scale back. Retail investors have not been subject to scale back.
"The final price of NZ$1.50, while below the indicative range, is an outstanding result in very tough market conditions," said Mr Pillar.
"While demand demonstrated coverage at higher pricing levels, the vendors have reduced the offer pricing to achieve a strong secondary market. The offer was oversubscribed and Frucor Beverages will have a first-class share register."
The offer was managed by Joint Global Co-ordinators Credit Suisse First Boston NZ Securities Limited and Salomon Smith Barney Australia Securities Pty Limited.
Frucor Beverages managing director Mark Cowsill said, Frucor Beverages is focused on continuing to achieve high growth in the international beverage arena by actively pursuing further global expansion into new growth markets, leveraging our already significant Australian presence and continuing to grow our highly profitable New Zealand market.
“Our expansion strategy will be self-funded by the company’s attractive operating margins and the limited need for capital investment.
"A key focus to achieve growth is the continued development of functional drinks. Our recent successes in the NZ$1 billion UK energy drinks market with V being listed with more than 40 leading retailers, wholesalers and foodcourt operators in the UK, including leading grocery chains Sainsburys and Tesco, petrol giant BP and WH Smith have already exceeded our initial plans.
"Frucor Beverages has shown outstanding growth over the past four years. Between 1996 and 1999 financial years, earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation increased by 337 percent from NZ$4.1 million to NZ$17.9 million.
“Normalised earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of NZ$42.5 million is forecast for the 2001 financial year, over seven times that of the 1996 financial year. Clearly, Frucor Beverages is one of the fastest growing cold beverage companies in Australasia, and we have the opportunity to become a global leader in the energy drinks market," said Mr Cowsill.
The Directors intend to declare dividends at the time of the interim and annual results and be paid in March and September each year. The forecast FY2001 cash dividend is NZ 8.0 cents per share.
Application has been made to the New Zealand Stock Exchange for permission to list the shares and all the requirements of the Exchange relating thereto that can be complied with on or before the date of this advertisement have been duly complied with. However, the Exchange accepts no responsibility for any statement in this advertisement.
About Frucor Beverages
Frucor Beverages (FRU) is a world-class designer beverage company. The company is the market leader in energy drinks in both New Zealand and Australia, the market leader in the New Zealand juice and drinks category and is the second largest cold beverage company in New Zealand producing around 60 million litres per annum.
Its brand V has captured over 60 percent of the market share in the rapidly growing, high value energy drinks category in New Zealand and Australia. V was also launched in South Africa in October 1999 and into the NZ $1 billion / AU $830 million UK energy drinks market in May 2000.
The company's broad portfolio of well known brands in New Zealand is concentrated on premium, high growth beverage categories. Other products include fruit juices Fresh- Up and Just Juice – market leaders and New Zealand icons for more than 15 years – and popular brands such as McCoy, Citrus Tree, NZ Natural, H2GO and gforce.
For further information:
Pillar, Chairman, Frucor Beverages Group Limited
Mob: 0061 412 404 627
Mark Cowsill, Managing Director,
Frucor Beverages Group Limited
Mob: +64 21 742 421