Origin shareholders reject takeover bid

A bid to take over Australian energy firm and APLNG shareholder, Origin, by a consortium consisting of Canada’s Brookfield Asset Management and a unit of US-based energy investor EIG has been rejected after failing to secure the 75 percent majority required.

Origin said in a statement on Monday that 68.92 percent of the votes cast by the company’s shareholders were in favor of the scheme resolution, while 77.83 percent of Origin shareholders were present and voting at the scheme meeting.

Last week, Origin’s board also rejected a revised takeover offer from the consortium.

AustralianSuper, which has about 17 percent of shares in Origin, previously said it would vote against the offer.

The consortium and Origin entered into a binding deal in March this year and the takeover received approval from Australia’s competition regulator in October.

Upon closing of the transaction, Brookfield, its institutional partners and investors would have owned Origin’s energy markets business, Australia’s largest integrated power generator and energy retailer.

Moreover, EIG’s MidOcean would have separately owned Origin’s integrated gas segment including its upstream gas interests and the 27.5 percent stake in Australia Pacific LNG (APLNG).

Origin chairman Scott Perkins said in the statement that “shareholders turned out in significant numbers to have their say on the future of the Origin.”

“Throughout this process, the board has focused on ensuring all Origin shareholders recognize that their vote is important,” he said.

“While the scheme will not proceed, it was supported by many Origin shareholders. Importantly, this process has made clear the confidence all shareholders have in Origin’s business, assets and people, and its strategic positioning for the energy transition,” Perkins said.

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