AGL makes $3 billion bid for Vocus

AGL makes $3 billion bid for Vocus

AGL Energy (ASX: AGL) is having a second crack at acquiring internet service provider Vocus (ASX: VOC) after Swedish suitor EQT backed down from its bid last week

In late May AGL confirmed it had already made a confidential offer for the telco which owns the Dodo and iPrimus brands, but an inability to reach acceptable due diligence terms led to a withdrawal.

EQT's absence has clearly revived hopes amongst the AGL board that a deal could get over the line, with the announcement today of a non-binding takeover bid at $4.85 per share in cash.

The price is still short of the $5.25 offered by EQT, but the market treated that bid with scepticism in any case with the price only reaching as high as $4.90.

"After last week's announcement that discussions with EQT Infrastructure had ceased, AGL returned with a non-binding and indicative proposal to acquire Vocus for $4.85 per share," says Vocus managing director Kevin Russell.

"There is a clear market opportunity for Vocus, which is generating significant interest in our business and our assets."

He says the group is focused on executing a turnaround strategy and delivering on opportunities ahead, but Vocus must also act in the interest of shareholders and engage with credible parties that bring forward proposals that are worthy of further consideration.

"As we progress through the AGL due diligence process, we will ensure that it is conducted efficiently and causes the minimum level of disruption to our business," he says. 

AGL's indicative proposal will be subject to a four-week period of exclusive due diligence, and will be conditional upon unanimous recommendation from the Vocus Board and entry into a mutually acceptable scheme implementation agreement.

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