Pioneer shareholders say yes to PepsiCo


Pioneer shareholders say yes to PepsiCo

Published Date: 2019-10-16 | Source: Stephen Gunnion | Author: Stephen Gunnion

Pioneer shareholders say yes to PepsiCo

Some conditions still need to me met after almost all Pioneer shareholders voted in favour of the takeover proceeding.

Pioneer Food Group's shareholders have voted overwhelmingly in favour of its R24 billion takeover by US food and beverages giant PepsiCo.

All holders of the group's Class A shares and shareholders representing 99.98% of its ordinary shares backed the scheme of arrangement at a general meeting yesterday, while 99.57% of its ordinary shares were voted in favour of its delisting from the JSE. The R110 offer, made in July, came at a 56.5% premium to the 30-day volume-weighted average traded price of Pioneer's shares up to 12 July, the day before it cautioned the market it was in talks.

Ahead of yesterday's meeting, the proposal already had the buy-in of shareholders representing 52.85% of its stock, including major shareholder Zeder, whose own shareholders approved the transaction last month.

PepsiCo, which is listed on the US's NASDAQ, plans to use SA as a hub for expansion throughout Africa, while providing Pioneer with access to new markets and improving its ability to compete more effectively in Africa and beyond. Apart from Pepsi-Cola, it owns brands including Mountain Dew, 7UP, Nik Naks, Frito-Lay, Doritos, Simba, Quaker Oats and Tropicana Juice, amongst others. Pioneer's brands include Sasko bread and flour, Weet-Bix, Liqui Fruit and White Star maize meal.

Pioneer said the offer was still subject to a number of conditions. On Monday, it said had met two of the three conditions set by PepsiCo, including that it wouldn't need to restate its financial results and that its 2019 EBITDA wouldn't be more than 10% below an agreed amount of R2.055 billion.

If all conditions are met, including regulatory approval, the scheme is expected to be finalised next February.

Pioneer's shares rose 0.2% to R107.30 yesterday.

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