Cosco hits acquisition threshold, aims to delist Cogent

Chinese shipping firm Cosco Shipping International (Singapore) has hit the 90 per cent compulsory acquisition mark for its $1.02-a-share cash offer for Cogent Holdings.

As at 5pm on Thursday, Cosco had received valid acceptances representing around 5.68 per cent of the total number of Cogent shares, the company said.

Cosco had previously received irrevocable undertakings by four Cogent shareholders, who collectively hold 84.33 per cent of the total number of Cogent's shares.

Since this brings Cosco's total holdings to 90.01 per cent, Cosco said that it will pursue a delisting of Cogent from the Singapore Exchange.

The four undertaking shareholders are Cogent's executive chairman Tan Yeow Khoon, his wife Ng Poh Choo, managing director Tan Yeow Lam, and executive director and chief executive Benson Tan Min Cheow, all of whom had agreed to accept the offer on or before Jan 3 next year.

Cosco's offer price represents some 31/2 times Cogent's net tangible asset per share of 29.8 cents as at end-June this year.

Following the delisting, Cosco said it intends for Cogent to continue with its existing business activities.

It does not intend to introduce any major changes to Cogent's existing businesses, redeploy any of Cogent's major fixed assets, or discontinue the employment of any Cogent employees, other than in the ordinary course of business.

Cosco's financial adviser for the deal, Bank of China, will extend a $350 million loan facility to fund partially the takeover.


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