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Fonterra Pleased With Extra $3.5m For Dairy Foods

Wednesday 24 April 2002

Fonterra Pleased With Extra $3.5m For Dairy Foods Shares

Fonterra has agreed to accept an improved offer from Rank Group for its stake in New Zealand Dairy Foods (NZDF).

“In order to win the support of the 6,200 shareholders who have a choice over whether to sell, Rank have decided to slightly increase their offer from NZ$1.70 a share to NZ$1.75," Fonterra's Chief Financial Officer Graham Stuart said today.

“As a forced seller, Fonterra was happy with the NZ$1.70 offer we negotiated with Rank but we are obviously pleased to accept the improved price,” Mr Stuart said. "That the margin between the forced sale price and the voluntary sale price is five cents – or just under three percent of the initial offer price – underlines the quality of the deal we announced earlier this month. It also emphasises the benefit of being a voluntary seller.

"Fonterra appreciates the role NZDF took in facilitating the higher offer. John Storey has done a good job advancing the interests of all NZDF's shareholders in relation to the offer," Mr Stuart said.

Fonterra is required to sell its 50.0004 percent stake in New Zealand Dairy Foods (70 million shares) by 27 September under the Dairy Industry Restructuring Act in order to ensure the continuation of competition in the New Zealand consumer market for dairy products.

New Zealand Dairy Foods has approximately 40 percent of the New Zealand dairy market. Its has the New Zealand rights to use the Anchor, Fernleaf and Chesdale brands and also owns other brands including Fresh 'n' Fruity, Royal Tasman and Ornelle.

END

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