• Del Monte stock rights offer gets regulators’ nod

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    DUAL-LISTED canned fruit maker Del Monte Pacific Ltd. (DMPL) said it has received approval from Philippine and Singapore regulators for its planned $154.4-million stock rights offer.

    DMPL said it obtained regulatory and listing approval from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) on January 14 and 20, respectively.

    It said it has also obtained the nod of the Singapore Exchange Securities Trading Ltd. to list up to 614.8 million new shares.

    The company announced last January 30 that it will offer a total of 641.93 million shares priced at P10.60 each. Gross proceeds will amount to P6.8 billion or $154.4 million.

    The record date was moved to February 9 from the previously set February 2. The stock rights offer will commence on February 12 and end on March 2.

    DBS Bank Ltd. will serve as the underwriter, manager and rights issuer in Singapore while BPI Capital Corp. will be the domestic manager and underwriter.

    After deducting offer-related expenses of $4.5 million (P198.4 million), the $149.9 million (P6.6 billion) net proceeds of the rights offer will be used to partially repay the $165-million bridging loan facility from Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) that the company used to purchase its US arm Del Monte Foods Inc. (DMFI).

    DMPL acquired DMFI for $1.68 billion on February 18 last year.

    DMPL booked a $21.7-million net loss in the first half of its 2014-2015 fiscal year, reversing its $12.96-million net income a year earlier, due to acquisition expenses incurred from the DMFI takeover.

    Despite the net losses, the fruit canner saw a surge in its April to October 2014 revenues to $993.63 million from $255.66 million in the previous year, with over $700 million contributed by the newly-acquired DMFI.

    DMPL adjusted its fiscal year to April to May from January to December previously to align with the financial year of DMFI.

    DMPL owns the leading brand Del Monte across food and beverage categories in the Philippines, as well as in India via joint venture firm FieldFresh Foods with one of India’s largest conglomerates, Bharti Enterprises.

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