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Olam reaches 90 percent of Farming Systems Uruguay

Tuesday 13th November 2012

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Olam International, the Singapore-based commodities company, has succeeded in gaining more than 90 percent of takeover target NZ Farming Systems Uruguay, allowing it to take the company private.

Olam had 90.19 percent of Farming Systems, enough to compulsorily acquire the rest, it said in a statement today. It offered 75 cents a share last month to mop up the 14 percent of Farming Systems it didn't already own, in its second attempt to get to 100 percent of the target after taking control last year.

Shares of Farming Systems last traded at 73 cents, giving it a market value of $178 million. The stock is up about 12 percent this year.

The company first listed in December 2007 with the aim of building a dairying business based on New Zealand farming techniques in the South American country, where land was comparatively cheap and the industry relatively undeveloped.

In August it announced it had missed its guidance with a full-year loss of US$7.6 million and signalled plans to raise US$135 million to repay a debt to its controlling shareholder Olam.

BusinessDesk.co.nz

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