Baosteel and Aurizon Welcome Aquila Recommendation
We refer to the joint takeover offer by Baosteel Resources Australia Pty Ltd (ABN 66 154 815 362) (Baosteel) and Aurizon Operations Limited (ABN 47 564 947 264) (Aurizon) (together, the Bidders) to acquire 100% of the ordinary shares in Aquila Resources Limited (Aquila) that they do not already own for A$3.40 per share (the Offer).
The Bidders note today’s announcement by Aquila that its Independent Board Committee intends to recommend that Aquila shareholders ACCEPT the Offer in the absence of a superior proposal. A copy of the Aquila announcement is attached for ease of reference.
Aquila advised that it will lodge its Target's Statement by 23 June 2014, which will include the independent expert report from Grant Samuel & Associates Pty Ltd. The Target's Statement will detail the reasons Aquila is recommending shareholders ACCEPT the offer.
We also note that the Executive Chairman and CEO of Aquila, Mr Tony Poli (who has a relevant interest in 28.92% of Aquila) has advised he currently intends to ACCEPT the Offer, in the absence of a superior offer (although he has reserved the right to revisit this).
“This is a welcome development today which recognises the compelling nature of our all cash Offer.” said Baosteel Resources International Co., Ltd Chairman Mr Dai Zhihao. “If our offer is successful, it provides to Aquila shareholders who accept the offer certainty, cash and a significant premium in an iron ore market that has significantly declined since we made our Offer.”
“Baosteel and Aurizon will continue to work towards the successful close of the offer. If our bid is successful, we look forward to quickly progressing Aquila’s major resource projects including the West Pilbara Iron Ore Project.”
“The Bidders have been pleased with the significant interest from both institutional and retail investors following today's announcement by Aquila."
Aurizon’s Managing Director & CEO Lance Hockridge said: “Aurizon and Baosteel are very committed to this Offer, and to the development of West Pilbara Iron Ore Project and the significant economic benefits that the project would bring. Our partnership is one of scale, capability and track record – so essential in underpinning major developments of this kind, particularly, in the current market environment. If the Baosteel and Aurizon bid is successful, with the co-operation of the API partners, the WPIOP development process could be underway in the near term.”
The Offer Period is scheduled to close at 7.00pm (Sydney time) on 11 July 2014. The Bidders confirm that they will not extend the Offer Period, unless all remaining Defeating Conditions of the Offer are fulfilled or waived by them prior to that time. The Bidders encourage Aquila shareholders to ACCEPT the Offer before it is scheduled to close at 7.00pm (Sydney time) on 11 July 2014.
The Offer remains the only offer available for all Aquila shares today.
For further information regarding the Offer, please contact the Bidder’s advisers:
Financial adviser (Baosteel): Damian Pearson Deutsche Bank Tel: +61 420 987 851