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Hansteen Hldgs plc - Court Sanction of the Scheme

RNS Number : 7948B
Hansteen Holdings plc
04 February 2020
 

NOT FOR RELEASE, PUBLICATION OR DISTRIBUTION, IN WHOLE OR IN PART, DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY, IN, INTO OR FROM ANY JURISDICTION WHERE TO DO SO WOULD CONSTITUTE A VIOLATION OF THE RELEVANT LAWS OF SUCH JURISDICTION

 

THIS ANNOUNCEMENT CONTAINS INSIDE INFORMATION

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

4 February 2020

RECOMMENDED CASH ACQUISITION

of

HANSTEEN HOLDINGS PLC

by

POTTER UK BIDCO LIMITED

 

Court sanction of the scheme of arrangement

 

Hansteen Holdings PLC (Hansteen) announces that the High Court of Justice in England and Wales has today sanctioned the scheme of arrangement under Part 26 of the Companies Act 2006 (the Scheme) by which the recommended all cash offer for the entire issued and to be issued ordinary share capital of Hansteen (the Acquisition) by Potter UK Bidco Limited (Bidco), a newly-formed company indirectly owned by investment funds advised by affiliates of The Blackstone Group Inc. (Blackstone), is being implemented. The Scheme has become fully unconditional, subject only to the delivery of a copy of the Court Order to the Registrar of Companies.

 

It is anticipated that the Effective Date will be 6 February 2020, being the date on which a copy of the Court Order is expected to be delivered to the Registrar of Companies.

 

The Scheme Record Time will be 6.00 p.m. (London time) on 5 February 2020. No transfers of Hansteen Shares will be registered after this time.

 

It is expected that the listing of the Hansteen Shares on the Official List of the FCA and the trading of the Hansteen Shares on the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange will each be suspended, effective from 7.30 a.m. (London time) tomorrow, 5 February 2020 and, subject to the Scheme becoming effective on 6 February 2020, will each be cancelled, effective from 8.00 a.m. (London time) on 7 February 2020.

 

Full details of the Scheme are set out in the scheme document published on 10 January 2020 (the Scheme Document). Unless otherwise defined, all capitalised terms in this announcement shall have the meaning given to them in the Scheme Document.

 

Enquiries


Hansteen

Ian Watson

Morgan Jones

 

+44 (0)20 7408 7000

Peel Hunt (Financial adviser to Hansteen)

Capel Irwin

Michael Nicholson

Harry Nicholas

 

+44 (0)20 7418 8900

Tavistock Communications (PR adviser to Hansteen)

Jeremy Carey

Simon Hudson

 

+44 (0)20 7920 3150

Bidco

Ramesh Chhabra

Alexandra Ritterman

 

+44 (0)20 7451 4195

Rothschild & Co (Financial Adviser to Blackstone and Bidco)


Alex Midgen

Sam Green

+44 (0)20 7280 5000

Important notices relating to financial advisers

 

Peel Hunt LLP (Peel Hunt), which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in the United Kingdom, is acting exclusively for Hansteen and for no one else in connection with the Acquisition and any other matter referred to in this announcement and will not be responsible to anyone other than Hansteen for providing the protections afforded to its clients or for providing advice in relation to the Acquisition or other matters referred to in this announcement.

 

N.M. Rothschild & Sons Limited (Rothschild & Co), which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in the United Kingdom, is acting exclusively for Blackstone and Bidco and for no one else in connection with the subject matter of this announcement and will not be responsible to anyone other than Blackstone and Bidco for providing the protections afforded to its clients or for providing advice in connection with the subject matter of this announcement.

 

Further information

 

This announcement is not intended to and does not constitute, or form part of, an offer, invitation or the solicitation of an offer to purchase, otherwise acquire, subscribe for, sell or otherwise dispose of any securities, or the solicitation of any vote or approval in any jurisdiction, pursuant to the Acquisition or otherwise, nor shall there be any sale, issuance or transfer of securities of Hansteen in any jurisdiction in contravention of applicable law. The Acquisition will be made solely by means of the Scheme Document or any document by which the Acquisition is made, which will contain the full terms and conditions of the Acquisition including details of how to vote in respect of the Acquisition. Any vote in respect of the Scheme or other response in relation to the Acquisition should be made only on the basis on the information contained in the Scheme Document.

 

This announcement does not constitute a prospectus or a prospectus equivalent document.

 

This announcement has been prepared for the purposes of complying with English law, the rules of the London Stock Exchange, the Listing Rules and the City Code on Takeovers and Mergers and the information disclosed may not be the same as that which would have been disclosed if this announcement had been prepared in accordance with the laws and regulations of any jurisdictions outside the United Kingdom.

 

Overseas Shareholders

 

The release, publication or distribution of this announcement in jurisdictions other than the United Kingdom or the United States may be restricted by law and/or regulations. Persons who are not resident in the United Kingdom or the United States or who are subject to the laws and regulations of other jurisdictions should inform themselves of, and observe, any applicable requirements.

 

Unless otherwise determined by Bidco or required by the Takeover Code, and permitted by applicable law and regulation, the Acquisition shall not be made available, directly or indirectly, in, into or from a Restricted Jurisdiction where to do so would violate the laws in that jurisdiction and no person may vote in favour of the Acquisition by any such use, means, instrumentality or form within a Restricted Jurisdiction or any other jurisdiction if to do so would constitute a violation of the laws of that jurisdiction. Accordingly, copies of this announcement and all documents relating to the Acquisition are not being, and must not be, directly or indirectly, mailed or otherwise forwarded, distributed or sent in, into or from a Restricted Jurisdiction where to do so would violate the laws in that jurisdiction, and persons receiving this announcement and all documents relating to the Acquisition (including custodians, nominees and trustees) must not mail or otherwise forward, distribute or send them in, into or from such jurisdictions where to do so would violate the laws in those jurisdictions. If the Acquisition is implemented by way of a Takeover Offer (unless otherwise permitted by applicable law and regulation), such Takeover Offer may not be made available directly or indirectly, into or from a Restricted Jurisdiction where to do so would violate the laws in that jurisdiction.

 

The availability of the Acquisition to Hansteen Shareholders who are not resident in the United Kingdom (and, in particular, their ability to vote their Scheme Shares with respect to the Scheme at the Court Meeting, or to appoint another person as proxy to vote at the Court Meeting on their behalf) may be affected by the laws of the relevant jurisdictions in which they are resident. Persons who are not resident in the United Kingdom should inform themselves of, and observe, any applicable requirements, as any failure to comply with such requirements may constitute a violation of the securities laws of any such jurisdiction. To the fullest extent permitted by applicable law, the companies and persons involved in the Acquisition disclaim any responsibility or liability for the violation of such restrictions by any person.  The Acquisition shall be subject to the applicable requirements of the Takeover Code, the Panel, the London Stock Exchange, the Financial Conduct Authority and the Listing Rules. Further details in relation to Overseas Shareholders are contained in the Scheme Document.

 

This announcement does not constitute a prospectus or prospectus equivalent document.

 

Additional Information for US Investors

 

The Acquisition is being made to acquire the securities of an English company by means of a scheme of arrangement provided for under the laws of England and Wales. A transaction effected by means of a scheme of arrangement is not subject to the proxy solicitation or tender offer rules under the US Exchange Act. Accordingly, the Scheme will be subject to disclosure requirements and practices applicable in the United Kingdom to schemes of arrangement, which are different from the disclosure requirements of the US under the US Exchange Act. The financial information included in this announcement and the Scheme documentation has been or will have been prepared in accordance with accounting standards applicable in the UK and thus may not be comparable to financial information of US companies or companies whose financial statements are prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles in the US.

If Bidco were to elect to implement the Acquisition by means of a Takeover Offer, such Takeover Offer would be made in compliance with applicable US laws and regulations, including to the extent applicable Section 14(e) of the US Exchange Act and Regulation 14E thereunder, and in accordance with the Takeover Code. Such a takeover would be made in the United States by Bidco and no one else.  Accordingly, the Acquisition would be subject to disclosure and other procedural requirements, including with respect to withdrawal rights, offer timetable, settlement procedures and timing of payments that are different from those applicable under US domestic tender offer procedures and law.

 

The receipt of cash pursuant to the Acquisition by a US holder as consideration for the transfer of its Scheme Shares pursuant to the Scheme will likely be a taxable transaction for United States federal income tax purposes and under applicable United States state and local, as well as foreign and other, tax laws. Each Hansteen Shareholder is urged to consult his independent professional adviser immediately regarding the tax consequences of the Acquisition applicable to him.

 

It may be difficult for US holders to enforce their rights and claims arising out of the US federal securities laws, since Hansteen is located in a country other than the US, and all of its officers and directors are residents of countries other than the US. US holders may not be able to sue a non-US company or its officers or directors in a non-US court for violations of US securities laws. Further, it may be difficult to compel a non-US company and its affiliates to subject themselves to a US court's judgement.

 

In accordance with normal UK practice and consistent with Rule 14e-5(b) under the US Exchange Act, Bidco, certain affiliated companies and the nominees or brokers (acting as agents) may make certain purchases of, or arrangements to purchase, shares in Hansteen outside of the US, other than pursuant to the Acquisition, until the date on which the Acquisition and/or Scheme becomes effective, lapses or is otherwise withdrawn. If such purchases or arrangements to purchase were to be made they would occur either in the open market at prevailing prices or in private transactions at negotiated prices and comply with applicable law, including to the extent applicable the US Exchange Act. Any information about such purchases or arrangements to purchase will be disclosed as required in the United Kingdom, will be reported to a Regulatory Information Service and will be available on the London Stock Exchange website at www.londonstockexchange.com.

 

In accordance with the Code, normal United Kingdom market practice and Rule 14e-5(b) of the US Exchange Act, Peel Hunt and its affiliates will continue to act as an exempt principal trader in Hansteen securities on the London Stock Exchange. These purchases and activities by exempt principal traders which are required to be made public in the United Kingdom pursuant to the Code will be reported to a Regulatory Information Service and will be available on the London Stock Exchange website at www.londonstockexchange.com. This information will also be publicly disclosed in the United States to the extent that such information is made public in the United Kingdom.

 

Forward Looking Statements

 

This announcement (including information incorporated by reference in the announcement), oral statements made regarding the Acquisition, and other information published by Bidco and Hansteen contain certain forward-looking statements, beliefs or opinions, with respect to the financial condition, results of operations and business of Bidco and Hansteen. These forward-looking statements can be identified by the fact that they do not relate only to historical or current facts. Forward-looking statements often use words such as "anticipate", "target", "expect", "envisage", "estimate", "intend", "plan", "goal", "believe", "hope", "aims", "continue", "will", "may", "should", "would", "could", or other words of similar meaning. These statements are based on assumptions and assessments made by Hansteen, and/or Bidco, in light of their experience and their perception of historical trends, current conditions, future developments and other factors they believe appropriate. By their nature, forward-looking statements involve risk and uncertainty, because they relate to events and depend on circumstances that will occur in the future and the factors described in the context of such forward-looking statements in this announcement could cause actual results and developments to differ materially from those expressed in or implied by such forward-looking statements. Although it is believed that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are reasonable, no assurance can be given by Hansteen and Bidco that such expectations will prove to have been correct and you are therefore cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements which speak only as at the date of this announcement. Neither Hansteen nor Bidco assumes any obligation and Hansteen and Bidco disclaim any intention or obligation, to update or correct the information contained in this announcement (whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise), except as required by applicable law or regulation (including under the Listing Rules and the Disclosure Guidance and Transparency Rules of the FCA).

 

EXCEPT AS EXPRESSLY PROVIDED IN THIS ANNOUNCEMENT, THE FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS HAVE NOT BEEN REVIEWED BY THE AUDITORS OF HANSTEEN, BLACKSTONE OR BIDCO OR THEIR RESPECTIVE FINANCIAL ADVISERS. SUCH FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS INVOLVE KNOWN AND UNKNOWN RISKS AND UNCERTAINTIES THAT COULD SIGNIFICANTLY AFFECT EXPECTED RESULTS AND ARE BASED ON CERTAIN KEY ASSUMPTIONS. THERE ARE SEVERAL FACTORS WHICH COULD CAUSE ACTUAL RESULTS TO DIFFER MATERIALLY FROM THOSE EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED IN FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS. AMONG THE FACTORS THAT COULD CAUSE ACTUAL RESULTS TO DIFFER MATERIALLY FROM THOSE DESCRIBED IN THE FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS IS THE SATISFACTION OF THE CONDITIONS, AS WELL AS ADDITIONAL FACTORS SUCH AS CHANGES IN GLOBAL, POLITICAL, ECONOMIC, BUSINESS, COMPETITIVE, MARKET AND REGULATORY FORCES, FUTURE EXCHANGE AND INTEREST RATES, CHANGES IN TAX RATES AND FUTURE BUSINESS COMBINATIONS OR DISPOSITIONS. SUCH FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS SHOULD THEREFORE BE CONSTRUED IN THE LIGHT OF SUCH FACTORS. NEITHER BIDCO NOR HANSTEEN, NOR ANY OF THEIR RESPECTIVE ASSOCIATES OR DIRECTORS, OFFICERS OR ADVISERS, PROVIDES ANY REPRESENTATION, ASSURANCE OR GUARANTEE THAT THE OCCURRENCE OF THE EVENTS EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED IN ANY FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS IN THIS ANNOUNCEMENT WILL ACTUALLY OCCUR.

 

Disclosure Requirements of the Takeover Code

 

Under Rule 8.3(a) of the Takeover Code, any person who is interested in 1 per cent. or more of any class of relevant securities of an offeree company or of any securities exchange offeror (being any offeror other than an offeror in respect of which it has been announced that its offer is, or is likely to be, solely in cash) must make an Opening Position Disclosure following the commencement of the offer period and, if later, following the announcement in which any securities exchange offeror is first identified. An Opening Position Disclosure must contain details of the person's interests and short positions in, and rights to subscribe for, any relevant securities of each of: (i) the offeree company; and (ii) any securities exchange offeror(s). An Opening Position Disclosure by a person to whom Rule 8.3(a) applies must be made by no later than 3.30 p.m. (London time) on the 10th Business Day following the commencement of the offer period and, if appropriate, by no later than 3.30 p.m. (London time) on the 10th Business Day following the announcement in which any securities exchange offeror is first identified. Relevant persons who deal in the relevant securities of the offeree company or of a securities exchange offeror prior to the deadline for making an Opening Position Disclosure must instead make a Dealing Disclosure.

 

Under Rule 8.3(b) of the Takeover Code, any person who is, or becomes, interested in 1 per cent.  or more of any class of relevant securities of the offeree company or of any securities exchange offeror must make a Dealing Disclosure if the person deals in any relevant securities of the offeree company or of any securities exchange offeror. A Dealing Disclosure must contain details of the dealing concerned and of the person's interests and short positions in, and rights to subscribe for, any relevant securities of each of: (i) the offeree company; and (ii) any securities exchange offeror(s), save to the extent that these details have previously been disclosed under Rule 8. A Dealing Disclosure by a person to whom Rule 8.3(b) applies must be made by no later than 3.30 p.m. (London time) on the Business Day following the date of the relevant dealing.

 

If two or more persons act together pursuant to an agreement or understanding, whether formal or informal, to acquire or control an interest in relevant securities of an offeree company or a securities exchange offeror, they will be deemed to be a single person for the purpose of Rule 8.3.

 

Opening Position Disclosures must also be made by the offeree company and by any offeror and Dealing Disclosures must also be made by the offeree company, by any offeror and by any persons acting in concert with any of them (see Rules 8.1, 8.2 and 8.4).

 

Details of the offeree and offeror companies in respect of whose relevant securities Opening Position Disclosures and Dealing Disclosures must be made can be found in the Disclosure Table on the Panel's website at www.thetakeoverpanel.org.uk, including details of the number of relevant securities in issue, when the offer period commenced and when any offeror was first identified. You should contact the Panel's Market Surveillance Unit on +44 (0)20 7638 0129 if you are in any doubt as to whether you are required to make an Opening Position Disclosure or a Dealing Disclosure.

 

Publication on website and availability of hard copies

 

A copy of this announcement will be made available, subject to certain restrictions relating to persons resident in Restricted Jurisdictions, free of charge on Hansteen's website at https://www.hansteen.co.uk/investors. For the avoidance of doubt, the contents of those websites are not incorporated into and do not form part of this announcement.

 

You may request a hard copy of the Scheme Document and all information incorporated into the Scheme Document by reference to another source by contacting Link Asset Services during normal business hours on 0371 664 0321 from within the UK or +44 (0)371 664 0321 if calling from outside the UK or by submitting a request in writing to Link Asset Services, PSX1, The Registry, 34 Beckenham Road, Beckenham, Kent, England BR3 4TU. Calls are charged at the standard geographic rate and will vary by provider. You may also request that all future documents, announcements and information to be sent to you in relation to the Acquisition should be in hard copy form.


This information is provided by RNS, the news service of the London Stock Exchange. RNS is approved by the Financial Conduct Authority to act as a Primary Information Provider in the United Kingdom. Terms and conditions relating to the use and distribution of this information may apply. For further information, please contact [email protected] or visit www.rns.com.
 
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