90% DJs Shareholders Back Foreign Takeover

Written by Oonagh Reidy     14/07/2014 | 12:11 | Category: INDUSTRY

David Jones shareholders have given the thumbs up to Woolworths $2.2bn takeover

90% DJs Shareholders Back Foreign Takeover

The takeover proposal, first announced in April, got an overwhelming 89.6% of DJ's shareholders backing at a meeting that took place in Sydney today. 10.3% were against the takeover. 

 75% of shareholder votes in favour was required to get the deal over the line. 

South African-owned retailer Woolworths proposed a takeover David Jones for a "significant premium" of $4 per share cash payment, Chairman Gordon Cairns told investors today.  

The deal could be worth up to $2.2 billion and had the backing of the company's board.

Cairns said the southern hemisphere retailer would bring meaningful scale, enhanced sourcing capability, financial strength and enhanced product range to the Australian department store.  

If the takeover deal did not go ahead Cairns warned of "specific risk associated with David Jones business and other general risks.

The shareholder vote was postponed by two weeks after it emerged Premier Investment boss Solomon Lew had amassed a 10% stake in DJ's. 

Lew, in turn, had gripes with Woolworths as owners of a majority stake in Country Road who eventually capitulated to his desire to buy his minority stake in the clothing retailer, which is likely have helped get Lew's backing for today's vote. 

David Jones share were halted today prior to the 10am shareholder meeting, standing at $3.93.

However, there is one more step to finalise the deal - the Federal Court must also give its nod of approval at a hearing scheduled for this Thursday.

If the deal is approved by regulators, shareholders will receive $4 a share on August 01.   

Woolworths shareholders have already approved the deal. 

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