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$15-bn M&A shares: Mittal gets go-ahead
May 14, 2008 19:23 IST
ArcelorMittal may not have to pay much in cash when it next goes for merger and acquisitions as its shareholders have authorised the board to issue fresh shares worth an estimated $15 billion for such potential deals.
At an extra-ordinary general meeting held in Luxembourg late Tuesday, ArcelorMittal shareholders approved a proposal to issue 147 million fresh equity shares, representing about 10 per cent its outstanding share capital and worth $14.3 billion at the current share price of $97.23.
Authorisation for issuing shares comes along with power to limit or cancel preferential subscription rights of existing shareholders for a period ending on November 5, 2012.
Last year, shareholders had authorised the board to issue stock options and other equity-based grants to the employees within limits of authorised equity capital of 1.47 billion.
However, the board sought to further enlarge the equity capital to 1.617 billion in order to allow the issuance of new shares "for merger, acquisitions or similar transactions."
In its notice seeking shareholders' nod at the EGM held on Tuesday, the board said that it "considers it of paramount importance in the globalisation context of the steel industry to be in a position to issue additional shares as a mean to enter into potential growth opportunities and consequently, conclude mergers, acquisitions or any other similar transactions, amongst others, by way of exchange of shares."
The board also noted that such authorisation is justified 'taking into consideration the company and its subsidiaries' need to enter into potential growth opportunities while offering shares in exchange rather than cash, which shall demonstrate the strong value plan and strategy development scheme of the management.'