A consortium led by China National Chemical Corp, or ChemChina,
has called off talks to buy Australian farm chemicals maker Nufarm
Ltd as it was unable to make a formal offer before a deadline.
ChemChina and two US private equity firms, Blackstone and Fox
Paine, agreed last month to pay A$3 billion (US$2.8 billion) for
Nufarm, which would form the world's largest supplier of generic
Melbourne-based Nufarm and the consortium had entered into an
exclusive deed, under which Nufarm was obliged not to pursue talks
with other parties, on November 5. The deed expired at midnight
Nufarm said yesterday it has been advised that the consortium
would be unable to formalize the proposal before the expiry of the
agreement, so discussion between the two parties had ceased.
Nufarm shares slumped 12.08 percent yesterday in Sydney trading,
the biggest drop in more than 11 years.
Analysts attributed the buyout withdrawal to the deteriorating
debt market. The United States subprime mortgage crisis has made
funding for such multi-billion dollar deals increasingly
Nufarm has said it has been approached by other parties since
the ChemChina-led bid.
"Looking forward, we are strongly positioned to generate
additional growth from our existing business and to participate
actively in industry consolidation opportunities," Nufarm Chairman
Kerry Hoggard said in a statement yesterday.
(Shanghai Daily December 11, 2007)