AVI not in talks with Tiger Brands

The country’s second-largest food company, AVI, is not in talks with Tiger Brands, the largest food company in South Africa.

AVI said in a statement on Monday that it had not received a formal offer from Tiger Brands, nor was it in discussions with Tiger Brands regarding such a potential offer.

AVI said it had received two unsolicited non-binding expressions of interest (EOIs) from Tiger Brands on October 8 and 24.

“In considering the EOIs, the company appointed advisers and met with three of its key shareholders, previously approached by Tiger Brands, at such shareholders’ request.”

AVI said it had responded to Tiger Brands in writing, stating why it was of the view that the potential offers were not in the best interests of AVI or its shareholders.

AVI added that the offer Tiger Brands said it was considering making was materially the same as the previous two offers. AVI’s board was of the view that any potential offer had to adequately represent the future prospects of the company and be accompanied by a 100% cash underpin, supported by a confirmation of funding acceptable to the board.

It added that it had not received a formal offer from Tiger Brands—however, in the event that a formal offer was received, AVI’s board would consider it and provide the appropriate guidance to its shareholders.

Tiger Brands advised on Monday that the company was considering making a cash and share offer for AVI of R24 per share, implying a total equity value for AVI of R8-billion.

“Tiger Brands believes the rationale for combining the two companies is compelling and, if implemented, will benefit both Tiger Brands and AVI shareholders.”

AVI’s core brands are I&J, Five Roses, Bakers, Ciro, Frisco, Willards and Real Juice.—Sapa

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