Neo Group founder seeks to take firm private via voluntary conditional cash offer

Janice Heng
Published Tue, Mar 30, 2021 · 07:29 PM

NEO Group founder, chairman and chief executive officer Neo Kah Kiat intends to take the Catalist-listed food caterer private via a voluntary conditional cash offer at S$0.60 per share, the firm announced on Tuesday, while trading in its shares was halted (see amendment note).

The offeror, Forestt Investment, was incorporated for the purpose of the offer, with its directors being Mr Neo and Neo Group executive director Liew Oi Peng.

Mr Neo and Ms Liew, who hold 76.79 per cent and 5.47 per cent of shares in Neo Group respectively - for a total of 82.26 per cent - have given their irrevocable undertakings for the offer.

The offer is an opportunity for shareholders to realise their investment "at a premium to historical prices without incurring brokerage and trading costs in an uncertain economic environment", said the offeror.

The offer price of S$0.60 per share is the highest closing price of the shares in over 2.5 years before March 29, the last trading day.

It represents a premium of 17.9 per cent, 14.5 per cent, 15.4 per cent, and 31 per cent, respectively, over the volume-weighted average price per share for the one-month, three-month, six-month, and 12-month periods up to and including the last trading day.


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The offeror said it believes that delisting and privatising Neo Group will allow "greater control and management flexibility" to manage the business, respond to changing market conditions, and optimise the use of management and resources.

The offer document will be despatched to shareholders between 14 and 21 days from Tuesday's announcement, with the offer remaining open for acceptances by shareholders for at least 28 days from the offer document's date of posting.

The board will appoint an independent financial adviser (IFA) to advise the independent directors. A circular with the advice of the IFA and recommendations of the independent directors will be sent to shareholders within 14 days from the offer document's date of despatch.

In the meantime, shareholders are advised to exercise caution in dealing with their shares, said Neo Group.

Amendment note: An earlier version of the article incorrectly stated that the announcement was made after market close. The announcement was made during trading hours, but while trading in Neo Group's shares had been halted.


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