Offer prices for QSR, KFC 'not likely to be increased'

KUALA LUMPUR: The offer price to take private QSR Brands Bhd and KFC Holdings (Malaysia) Bhd is unlikely to be revised upwards.

In December 2011, Johor Corp Bhd (JCorp) and private equity firm CVC Capital Partners announced their intention to buy QSR shares at RM6.80 each and RM3.79 per warrant. They also offered RM4 per KFC share and RM1 per warrant.

To a query if minority shareholders of QSR and KFC were happy with the offer prices, QSR and KFC deputy chairman Ahamad Mohamad replied, "everyone always wants higher offer prices. The advisers of this exercise; OSK Investment Bank, Am Merchant Bank and Affin Investment Bank, had advised that the offer prices are fair and reasonable".

He was speaking to reporters after the companies' shareholders meetings held here yesterday. Last week, the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) announced it was participating in the buyout of QSR and KFC alongside JCorp and CVC Capital.

Ahamad, who is also Kulim (M) Bhd managing director, said the privatisation of QSR and KFC would be facilitated via Kulim, which is 56 per cent owned by JCorp. Kulim has a 53.9 per cent stake in QSR and KFC is a 51 per cent unit of QSR.

He then estimated that this RM3.6 billion exercise will be completed by October 2012. "Judging from the recent price gain in Kulim shares, it can be inferred that many shareholders are receptive." Two days ago, Kulim was the top gainer on Bursa Malaysia, rising 29 sen to RM4.55 with 1.29 million shares done at market close. Kulim-CE rose six sen to 20 sen.

Last week, QSR and KFC announced the execution of the definitive agreements for their planned privatisations. This is an important milestone because unless and until the definitive agreements are signed, only then the various extraordinary general meetings can be called for Kulim, QSR and KFC shareholders to vote on.

QSR and KFC also announced that Kamaruzzaman Abu Kassim, who is currently JCorp chief executive officer and president, had resigned from his position as chairman and director in both QSR and KFC to reflect good corporate governance. Datuk Ayub Mion has been redesignated and appointed chairman of QSR and KFC.

QSR is the franchisee for Pizza Hut with more than 260 restaurants in Malaysia and Singapore. Through its unit KFC Holdings, the cash rich QSR is also the operator of more than 640 KFC restaurants in Malaysia, Singapore Brunei and India.

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