Coca-Cola European Partners makes $6.6 billion takeover offer for Coca-Cola Amatil

(Reuters) – Coca-Cola Amatil Ltd CCL.AX said on Monday that Coca-Cola European Partners CCEPC.L offered to buy the Australian bottler for A$9.23 billion ($6.58 billion), in what would be the country’s biggest deal this year.

FILE PHOTO: Workers walk at PT Coca-Cola Amatil Indonesia’s factory in Cibitung, Indonesia’s West Java province, February 24, 2011. REUTERS/Beawiharta

The world’s largest independent bottler of Coca-Cola is offering A$12.75 per share, an 18.6% premium to the last closing price of the Sydney-based company that operates across six countries in the Asia-Pacific. The company said that including long-term incentive share rights, the implied equity deal value was A$9.28 billion.

The takeover has the backing of Amatil’s independent shareholders, the company said.

U.S.-based Coca-Cola Co KO.N owns a 30.8% stake in Coca-Cola Amatil and a 19.4% stake in Coca-Cola European Partners, according to Refinitiv data.

Both companies, which bottle and sell Coca-Cola drinks across their respective markets, have been hit by lockdowns that have squeezed volumes and forced them to look to other channels.

Shares of Coca-Cola Amatil are down nearly a fifth from their 2020 high.

Business in the third quarter has improved, Amatil said, due to an easing of COVID-19 restrictions and a recovery in on-the-go channels such as fast-food outlets, cafes and convenience stores.

“This has particularly been the case in Western Australia and New Zealand … providing insight on the expected shape of the recovery that can be expected,” Amatil Managing Director Alison Watkins said in a statement.

The company has 32 production facilities and operates in Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, Fiji, Papua New Guinea and Samoa.

($1 = 1.4027 Australian dollars)

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