Hancock Prospecting extends Atlas Iron takeover bid

Hancock Prospecting, through subsidiary Redstone, has extended its takeover bid for Atlas Iron. The offer has been extended to August 31, 20 days later than was originally set and “subject to any further extension”.

Hancock’s all-cash offer has been twice extended – it was first set to close on August 3, and then August 17. Payment to shareholders who have accepted was supposedly due within seven days of their acceptance.

Hancock attributed this extension to the increase of its subsidiary’s relevant interest in Atlas, which has reached 56 per cent. This provided Hancock with effective control of Atlas.

Redstone now holds 68.48 per cent of voting power in Atlas.

The change in Atlas’ shareholding proportion has given its lenders the option to accelerate their debt repayment. However, none has chosen to move their repayment obligations forward at this stage.

Last month, Hancock made its takeover bid unconditional, waiving all its conditionality on the usual “prescribed occurrences”.

Atlas directors have unanimously recommended that Atlas shareholders accept the offer, stating that the offer was fair and reasonable.

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