BHP Billiton gets over 50 per cent of WMC and declares offer unconditional
Posted: 3 June 2005
BHP Billiton reported that, as at 1.45pm today, it had achieved acceptances under its offer for WMC Resources (WMC) (including instructions under the Acceptance Facility) for 55.45% of WMC's issued shares.
BHP Billiton also announced that it has declared its offer for WMC unconditional. BHP Billiton has waived the 90% minimum acceptance condition contained in clause 5.1(a) of its Bidder's Statement and all other conditions of the offer that were not previously waived or fulfilled. Formal notices are attached.
In addition, BHP Billiton will accelerate payment terms so that WMC shareholders who have accepted the offer or lodged instructions will be paid the offer consideration of $7.85 per WMC share within five business days of their acceptance being processed or instructions being implemented.
As BHP Billiton's voting power in WMC has increased to more than 50% for the purpose of section 624(2) of the Corporations Act(1), the offer is now automatically extended by 14 days from 3 June 2005.
BHP Billiton Chief Executive Officer Chip Goodyear said the offer is now scheduled to close at 7:30pm ( Melbourne time) on Friday, 17 June 2005. “We are delighted with the level of support from WMC shareholders and we strongly encourage remaining WMC shareholders to accept the offer before 17 June,” Mr Goodyear said.
“BHP Billiton expects that a meeting of the WMC Board will be convened early next week for changes to be made to the Board’s composition, as a result of BHP Billiton becoming the majority shareholder,” he said.
In relation to the instructions held under the Acceptance Facility, BHP Billiton is delivering the confirmation letter to Merrill Lynch Equities (Australia) Limited in accordance with the terms of the Acceptance Facility announced on 13 May 2005.
Merrill Lynch is then required to release the instructions held under the Acceptance Facility and deliver them to BHP Billiton or the relevant custodians as appropriate.
For more information see www.bhpbilliton.com