Kuala Lumpur Kepong Berhad has acquired Equatorial Palm Oil
Lincoln International LLP (“Lincoln”), a leading independent mid-market investment bank, has acted as the financial adviser to KL-Kepong International Limited (“KLKI”), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Kuala Lumpur Kepong Berhad (“KLK”), a listed Malaysian company, in its public offer for AIM listed Equatorial Palm Oil plc (“EPO”) which owns palm oil assets in Liberia, West Africa.
KLK, a company incorporated and headquartered in Malaysia, is one of the leading oil palm plantation groups in South East Asia. The KLK Group conducts its business through three core segments: plantations, resource-based manufacturing and property development in Malaysia. Originally established in 1906 as a rubber plantation company, KLK later expanded its business activities to include oil palm plantations. Both oil palm plantations and rubber plantations have remained as KLK’s core business activity. KLK has been listed on the Main Market of Bursa Malaysia Securities Berhad since 1974.
EPO is a crude palm oil producer founded in 2005 which, through its 50% interest in Liberian Palm Developments Limited (‘‘LPD’’), a company incorporated in Mauritius and its subsidiaries, has 50-year concessions to develop approximately 86,000 hectares in Liberia, West Africa, of which 3,750 hectares are currently planted with oil palm.
KLKI became EPO’s joint venture partner by acquiring a 50% interest in LPD. Subsequently KLKI acquired a 20.1% shareholding in EPO and subscribed for an additional 34.7% which, under the Takeover Code, required KLKI to make a mandatory cash offer for EPO. As a result of this offer, which valued EPO at £17.7m, KLKI now owns 63.2% of EPO.
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