03 February 2004 18:20 [Source: ICIS news]
FRANKFURT (CNI)--US private investment group Blackstone Capital Partners, through its German acquisition vehicle BCP Crystal Acquisition, has published its offer to acquire all outstanding shares of Celanese, CNI learned Tuesday.
This follows Monday’s approval of the tender offer by the German financial services authority, Bafin.
Celanese shareholders have until 15 March to accept the offer of Euro 32.50/share - a price described as "friendly" by both Blackstone and Celanese management.
Management of the German-based chemical group has until 16 February to recommend that its shareholders accept the bid, as it has already indicated it will do. However, a spokesman said the "reasoned opinion" probably will be published earlier.
The Blackstone offer values Celanese at 13% more than the average closing price of the shares over the last three months before the offer was announced. The equity group said the offer is a premium of around 42% over the average closing price of the 12 months preceding the offer.
The total transaction value is about Euro 3.1bn ($3.9bn) including the value of Celanese’s net debt and pension and post-retirement benefit obligations.
At least 85% of shareholders will have to tender for the take-over to go ahead. If Blackstone obtains 95% of equity it can squeeze out the remaining shareholders and de-list the company.
Celanese’s largest shareholder, Kuwait Petroleum, has already agreed to sell its stake, which represents 26.3% of share capital and 29% of voting rights, subject to certain unspecified conditions.
Some institutional shareholders have complained that the offer is too low but observers say there is no formal opposition to the deal.
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