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Landbank offers P1.5B for 66.67% of PDS

/ 05:09 AM March 05, 2018

Land Bank of the Philippines will woo Philippine Dealing System Holdings Corp. (PDS Group) to sell its majority stake to the state-run lender early next month.

Landbank president and chief executive Alex V. Buenaventura told reporters on late Friday that they would submit to PDS today the offer to buy 66.67 percent of the group at P360 a share payable in cash or an acquisition cost of about P1.5 billion.

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Landbank will source the cash from corporate funds, Buenaventura said.

“We’ll source it from our own existing capital because for Landbank, this will be an investment into a financially allied undertaking. So it’s an investment of Landbank and we will get the money from our existing capital,” Buenaventura explained.

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According to Buenaventura, April 5 would be the deadline to accept the offer.

“Landbank has long ago started its due diligence for the transaction and is currently in the process of securing the necessary regulatory approvals for the acquisition. With respect to the offer period, we cannot keep the development of the financial markets waiting—Landbank is serious and we intend to move fast. We plan to lock this deal up in 30 days,” according to Buenaventura.

Landbank has also engaged Development Bank of the Philippines as the financial adviser for the transaction, Buenaventura added.

Asked if he was confident that Landbank could acquire at least two-thirds of PDS shares, Buenaventura replied: “Having offered something higher than what PSE (the Philippine Stock Exchange) is offering at P320, and we are paying in cash unlike PSE’s offer of paying in shares, I think we have a very much more attractive offer.” —BEN O. DE VERA

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