Packaging giants Alcan and Pechiney have finally agreed on the terms of a liquidity agreement that will be made available to eligible beneficiaries of Pechiney subscription and purchase options. This ends months of discussions, plans and revised proposals.
Pechiney says that on exercising these options, holders will receive Alcan shares instead of Pechiney shares based on the terms of Alcan's public offer for Pechiney shares. The company has indicated to Alcan that it would tender into the offer the shares it holds and that underlie share purchase options. This decision was possible on account of the fact that Alcan has agreed to make available to Pechiney the shares which would be required to satisfy the exercise of Pechiney share purchase options.
A French offer prospectus (note d'information) issued by Alcan and cleared by the French Commission des operations de bourse under the visa number 03-858 dated 2 October 2003 is available on-line on the COB's website.
In addition, a French response statement (note en reponse) issued by Pechiney and cleared by the French Commission des operations de bourse under the visa number 03-926 dated October 27, 2003, is also available on-line on the COB's website as well as on the Pechiney's website.
Back in September, we reported that Alcan's proposals to purchase all of Pechiney's securities had ended unsatisfactorily. Pechiney advised Alcan on 31 August 2003 that its board did not accept Alcan's revised proposal. The French group said at the time that the increased bid still "continues to fall short of Pechiney's true strategic value, especially in light of the positive recent market trends relating to the euro-dollar exchange rate and the aluminium price", adding that they did however consider the move a step in the right direction.
Indeed, Alcan stated at the time that it remained confident a deal could eventually be agreed upon.
Alcan is a multinational company and a global leader in aluminum and packaging, as well as aluminum recycling. The group has operations in primary aluminum, fabricated aluminum as well as flexible and speciality packaging. It employs 54,000 people and has operating facilities in 42 countries.
French-based Pechiney is an international group listed on the Paris and New York stock exchanges. Its three core businesses are primary aluminum, aluminium conversion and packaging. Pechiney achieved sales of € 11.9 billion in 2002. It employs 34,000 employees.