Pattison takeover of Canfor shelved

Minority shareholders failed to give approval to stock buy offer

Jimmy Pattison has abandoned any further plans to acquire all of Canfor’s shares following a rejection by minority shareholders of an offer he tendered earlier this year.

The offer of $16 a share failed to obtain approval of a majority of the minority shareholders.

Pattison, through Great Pacific Capital Corp. already owns 51 per cent of Canfor and the offer, if accepted, would have given him all of the shares.

“This is due to the Canfor minority shareholders voting 45 per cent in favour and 55 per cent against the proposal, and thus not meeting the 50-per-cent-plus threshold of the minority requirement. Great Pacific will not be pursuing this opportunity any further,” Great Pacific said in a Dec. 16 statement.

The decision was released after results of proxy voting by minority shareholders was relesed Dec. 16.

A full vote of Dec. 18 had been planned.

Some analysts and minority shareholders had criticized the $16 a share offer as being too low.

Canfor shares dropped on the Toronto Stock Exchange following the sale failure.

The company, in its own Dec.16 statement, “plans to continue to diversify its business and pursue growth strategies in positioning itself for long-term success and sustainability.”

Canfor, as with other forestry companies in B.C., has been closing facilities either permanently or temporarily for more than a year in reaction to high logging costs, shortages of timber and declining American prices for their products.

Workers at the company’s Houston mill are on a two-week closure as of Dec. 23 but will be paid for statutory holidays during this closure period. In effect, they will be off work for seven days.

Qualifying workers are also eligible for an early retirement package announced by the provincial government in the fall.

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