PROPERTY investors 360 Capital Group (ASX: TGP) has made an ambitious move in its battle with NEXTDC (ASX: NXT) to acquire Asia Pacific Data Centre Group (ASX: AJD) with a sweetened offer of $1.95 per share.
360 Capital has submitted a proposal to the board of APDC to acquire all the ordinary securities of APDC by a scheme of arrangement, and trumps the $1.87 offer bid from technology and cloud services provider NEXTDC.
This new offer is a departure from their initial plan to acquire the company which involved a takeover proposal and it now means Tony Pitt's 360 Capital needs acceptances from owners of 75 per cent of APDC's shares by value.
Currently, 360 Capital owns nearly 20 per cent of APDC, whereas rival NEXTDC owns a 20.8 per cent stake. This could be enough to block the scheme proposal and looks almost certain to drag out the battle for control of the data centres even further.
"As stated previously, 360 Capital believes data centres as a real estate class are very exciting and that the facilities in AJD are world class, leased to a proven operator in NEXTDC," Pitt says in a statement.
NEXTDC is effectively a tenant of APDC which owns three data centres in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth that house the storage for NEXTDC's operations.
It was believed that NEXTDC was the frontrunner to secure the data centres after the APDC board passed down a unanimous recommendation to support its $1.87 offer.
Under the 360 Capital proposal, APDC shareholders would receive capital distribution from APDC of $0.65 per share plus cash consideration of $1.30 per security.
360 Capital's proposal requires APDC to increase its current debt facility from $29 million to $100 million and to use the proceeds of this facility to undertake a capital distribution of $0.65 per APDC security to all shareholders.
Given 360 Capital's latest offer is structured as a scheme of arrangement, rather than a takeover offer, the company requires the acceptances from owners of 75 per cent of APDC's shares by value.
APDC have so far not changed their current recommendation that APDC shareholders accept NEXTDC's cash takeover offer of $1.87 per share. In a release to the market APDC says they will provide a further update once 360 Capital's proposal can be considered in detail.
Shares in APDC are trading just below the 360 Capital offer at $1.94 at around 11am (AEST).
Business News Australia
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