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Constellation raises Vincor bid in ‘final offer’

Constellation Brands has raised its hostile takeover bid to CAN$1.1bn to acquire Vincor International, North America's fourth-largest wine producer.

‘In the absence of cooperation by Vincor, CAN$33 (€23.9) [per share] is Constellation’s best and final offer,’ Constellation’s CEO Richard Sands said.

The offer is 48% higher than the closing price of Vincor’s common shares on the Toronto Stock Exchange on 8 September— the day before Constellation’s first bid to buy Vincor — yet the Canadian-based company insists the price is too low.

‘We have consistently said that we would provide Constellation with access to non-public information if it was prepared to put an acceptable price on the table,’ said Mark Hilson, chair of a committee of independent directors assembled by Vincor to analyse Constellation’s approach.

But Constellation spokesman Mike Martin said they would not ‘throw out numbers until Vincor finds one acceptable.

‘We aren’t going to play that game,’ he said. ‘We have been deliberately excluded from their valuation process. We base our valuations on real facts and figures and we feel that CAN$33 per share, cash, is fair.’

Last week, Constellation offered Vincor CAN$35 per share if Vincor’s board agreed to cooperate with the transaction. The board refused and continues to urge shareholders to reject Constellation’s offers.

The bid expires on 8 December.

Written by Carolyn Hammond in Toronto

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