WPP AUNZ has advised that it has a received an unsolicited proposal from its majority shareholder WPP plc to acquire all of the ordinary shares in WPP AUNZ that it does not already own at a price of $A0.55 per share in cash.
WPP has submitted a proposal to the Board of WPP AUNZ Limited to pursue an acquisition of the remaining shares in WPP AUNZ. WPP currently holds a stake of approximately 61.5 per cent of the share capital of WPP AUNZ, which is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX:WPP).
The proposed acquisition is in line with WPP’s global strategy of simplifying its structure and will move WPP to 100 ownership and control of its Australian and New Zealand operations.
The proposal made by WPP, of $A0.55 per share in cash, represents a premium of approximately 34.1 per cent to the closing price of WPP AUNZ on 27 November 2020. The total aggregate consideration payable by WPP for the remaining shares would be approximately A$181m. The proposal has not yet been put to WPP AUNZ shareholders and there is no certainty that the acquisition will complete. The proposal is subject to customary conditions (including regulatory approvals) and, if implemented, is expected to be completed in 2021.
The Independent Directors of WPP AUNZ, along with its advisers, are considering the Proposal and shareholders are advised to take no action in relation to WPP plc’s Proposal until they receive the Independent Directors’ formal recommendation.
WPP AUNZ will update shareholders, in accordance with the Company’s continuous disclosure obligations, in due course.
WPP AUNZ has appointed UBS as its financial adviser and Herbert Smith Freehills as its legal adviser.
This release has been approved by the Company’s Independent Board Committee and Disclosure Committee.