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HindustanTimes Thu,24 Jul 2014

Zuari launches counter offer as battle for Mangalore Chemicals hots up

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, May 13, 2014
First Published: 11:21 IST(13/5/2014) | Last Updated: 11:26 IST(13/5/2014)
The battle for Vijay Mallya led United Breweries-promoted Mangalore Chemicals and Fertilisers Limited's 26% stake is heating up. Saroj Poddar's Zuari Fertilisers and Chemicals filed a counter offer for the company on Tuesday at Rs. 68.55 per share, almost 9% more than the offer made by Deepak Fertilisers and Petrochemicals Corp 10 days ago.
 
Zuari has made the offer along with United Breweries (Holdings) Ltd and other associate companies like Kingfiser Finvest India and McDowell Holdings Ltd. Mallya's UB Group holds 22% stake in Mangalore Chemicals but half of it is mortgaged with lenders while Zuari holds another 16.43% in the company. Zuari's Tuesday's offer values the company's stake at a little over Rs. 211 crore. 
 
Last month Deepak Fertilisers had started a takeover battle with UB Group with an unsolicited offer for 26% stake in an open offer to the company's shareholders at Rs. 61 per share that was subsequently raised to Rs. 63 per share on May 2. Zuari's offer is an attempt at thwarting the company's minority shareholders to accept Deepak Fertliliser's offer that may result in UB Group losing its management control. It could not be immediately ascertained whether Deepak Fertliliser would revise its bid further. 

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