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BASF wont extend Pronova offer again

By Gareth Macdonald , 20-Dec-2012

BASF says it will not extend its offer for pharmaceutical-grade omega-3 supplier Pronova BioPharma ASA beyond new mid-January deadline.

The German chemicals giant made its bid for Pronova last month , reasoning that Pronova’s facilities in Norway and Denmark – which can produce 2,500 tons of omga-3 a year – will cement its position in the growing drug industry fatty acid active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) market.

Originally, BASF hoped to seal the deal by December 19 and had secured irrevocable acceptance from 59.4 per cent of shareholders when it launched the 12.5 (€1.69) Krona per share offer .

However, according to a statement released yesterday, in the weeks since only another 8 per cent of Pronova shareholders have accepted the terms, which is some way short of the 90 per cent BASF needs to complete the takeover.

Board member Michael Heinz said: “We thank all Pronova shareholders that have been and will be supportive of our offer.

With the chances but also the risks for the business of Pronova in mind, we firmly believe that our offer does provide full and fair value for all shareholders. We will maintain our disciplined financial approach to acquisitions.”

BASF said it now has until January 18 to secure sufficient acceptances for the offer – which is unanimously supported by Pronova shareholders, adding that the new deadline is “the maximum extension of the offer period.”

Last week, BASF officially opened its Scotland-based omega-3 business – BASF Callanish – further underlining its interest in the market.

If completed, the acquisition would further strengthen BASF’s position and give it access to Pronova’s existing business with Abbott Laboratories, Kuhnil, Prospa, Pfizer, Grupo Ferrer, Pierre Fabre, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Takeda. 

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