APN Outdoor advises shareholders to bide their time following JC Decaux bid

APN Outdoor’s board has advised shareholders to take no immediate action as they consider yesterday’s $1.1bn bid from French out-of-home giant JC Decaux.

In the stock market announcement this morning, APN Outdoor’s board said there is no certainty the bid would proceed given the conditions attached to the offer.

The conditions of the bid lodged last night include the granting of a six week exclusivity period to allow JC Decaux to do its due diligence on the transaction, along with the negotiation of a scheme of arrangement and a requirement that APN Outdoor’s board unanimously recommend the scheme to shareholders.

Critically, another condition of the bid is that APN drop its bid to acquire competitor Adshel.

APN launched its $500million campaign to acquire Adshel in May, countering rival Ooh Media’s offer to buy the business three weeks earlier.

In this morning’s release, APN Outdoor said its due diligence on the Adshel offer is still ongoing and believes the “proposal is an attractive opportunity for the company and its shareholders.”

Further complicating the JC Decaux offer for APN Outdoor is the condition that the Foreign Investment Review Board and Australian Consumer and Competition Commission approve the transaction.

Those approvals are by no means guaranteed. In May 2017, the ACCC rejected a proposed merger between APN Outdoor and Ooh Media, which would have created Australia’s biggest out-of-home business.


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