Potash Corp of Saskatchewan, the world’s largest fertilizer maker, filed a lawsuit on Wednesday in an effort to block a hostile US$38.6 billion takeover offer from mining company BHP Billiton.
In its request for an injunction against the takeover, Potash claimed that BHP’s offer was “built upon false and misleading statements and omissions” as well as BHP’s “manipulation of the perceived value” of the firm’s shares.
The management of Potash has opposed the BHP offer, arguing that it significantly undervalues its shares. Potash executives have said that they expect another bidder to materialize, although none has appeared.
The aggressive legal action by the company against BHP will probably increase pressure from shareholders for an alternative, higher bid. While there have been indications that state-owned chemical companies and investment funds in China might make an offer, the governments of Saskatchewan and Canada appear cool to the idea of turning over control of the province’s natural resources to China, which is the world’s largest potash importer.
Still, two people with direct knowledge of the matter said that Sinochem (中國中化), the state-run parent of the largest fertilizer distributor in China, had hired Deutsche Bank and Citigroup to advise it on a possible acquisition of a stake in Potash.
Ruban Yogarajah, a spokesman for BHP, said that the lawsuit was without merit.
“This lawsuit seems to be their answer to the absence of another bidder,” he said.
On Monday, BHP extended its deadline for Potash shareholders to accept its offer by one month after Canadian regulators requested more information.
Although Potash is based in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, the lawsuit was filed with the US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. William Doyle, the president and chief executive of Potash, lives near Chicago and maintains an office in Northbrook.
Tropical Storm Koinu is expected to come closest to Taiwan from Wednesday through Friday as it passes through the Bashi Channel, but it remained uncertain how it would affect the weather, the Central Weather Administration (CWA) said. As of 8am yesterday, Koinu was about 1,000km east-southeast of Oluanpi (鵝鑾鼻), Taiwan’s southernmost point, and was moving northwest at 12kph, the CWA said. Koinu is likely to strengthen into a typhoon today or tomorrow and turn west as it enters the Bashi Channel to the south of Taiwan proper, CWA forecaster Chao Hung (趙竑) said. The storm’s trajectory is still unclear, so more time is
Taichung prosecutors yesterday indicted three people on charges of fraud for allegedly passing off watches assembled in Taiwan as Swiss-made timepieces and earning NT$400 million (US$12.4 million) in illicit gains. The Taichung branch office of the Ministry of Justice Investigation Bureau said in a statement that the group, headed by Mei Hua Precision Industry Co (梅華精密) and Laora Trading Co (仁徠貿易) manager Yang Hung-pin (楊鴻斌), had purchased the rights to use the Swiss trademark Ogival years ago and from November 2006 to December 2020 sold 26,282 counterfeit watches in department stores and online platforms in Taiwan. The branch office said they received
PALAU LAUNCHES: The source said that Taiwanese military personnel traveled to Palau, where a US brigade watched their work amid plans for a defense network The military last month participated in live-fire launches of MM-104F Patriot (PAC-3) missiles under US observation in an undisclosed location in Palau, a step forward in a US-led plan to create a joint defense missile system in the first island chain, a source said on condition of anonymity. The PAC-3 is the mainstay surface-to-air missile of the US, NATO and democratic nations in East Asia, the source said, adding that it has never been live-tested within Taiwan’s borders, the source said. The proximity of Taiwan to China and China’s close surveillance of the nation’s borders and nearby sea zones is a significant
TRAJECTORY: Koinu’s outer rim is expected to reach Orchid Island early tomorrow and Taitung at about noon, where waves of at least 6m are forecast A sea warning for Typhoon Koinu was issued at 11:30pm last night, the Central Weather Administration (CWA) said, adding that a land warning could be issued today. High waves of about 2m were observed in Taitung yesterday, while waves of 6m or higher were forecast for today, said Huang Chia-mei (黃嘉美), head of the CWA’s Taitung Weather Station. At noon yesterday, Koinu was about 660km southeast of Taitung, she said, adding that it was moving more to the north and its center could possibly make landfall. The storm’s outer rim would likely reach Orchid Island (Lanyu, 蘭嶼) in the early hours tomorrow and