By Mike Cherney
SYDNEY--Australian bottler Coca-Cola Amatil Ltd. said it entered into a formal agreement for European bottler Coca-Cola European Partners PLC to acquire most shares in the company, and that shareholders will vote on the plan in early 2021.
The deal was announced last week, but Coca-Cola European Partners has completed the due diligence that was a condition of entry into the formal agreement, called a scheme implementation deed.
Investment funds, mom-and-pop investors and other so-called independent shareholders that own 69% of Coca-Cola Amatil will vote on the plan. The other 31% of Coca-Cola Amatil is owned by Atlanta-based Coca-Cola Co., which has concluded a separate agreement to sell its stake to Coca-Cola European Partners, a bottler of Coke products in Western Europe.
Coca-Cola Amatil said the deal could be complete by March or April next year. It said its directors had unanimously recommended the deal.
Coca-Cola Amatil shareholders are being offered A$12.75 per share to sell their stake. Coke agreed to sell its stake to Coca-Cola European Partners at roughly A$10 per share.
In recent years, Atlanta-based Coke has moved to reduce exposure to costly bottling operations and focus instead on its more lucrative concentrate-making business. A few years ago, it completed a raft of deals to transform its U.S. bottling business from a largely company owned system to one that is run by independent groups.
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(END) Dow Jones Newswires