Defensive foundation blocks KPN takeover, demands ‘fair offer’
The foundation which on Friday blocked efforts by América Móvil to take over Dutch telecom group KPN says the defences will remain in place until the Mexican firm comes up with a ‘fair offer’.
The measure is meant to encourage the two sides to reach agreement, taking into account the interest of workers, customers and other other shareholders, the foundation’s chairman Jacques Shraven told a news conference.
The €7.2bn takeover was launched earlier this summer. América Móvil’s owner Carlos Slim is offering €2.40 per share for the former state-owned monopoly.
The foundation, charged with ensuring the continuity of the company, sees the takeover as hostile and has taken control of almost 50% of KPN’s voting rights.
The Stichting bescherming KPN was founded in 1994 ‘to protect key national infrastructure’ when KPN was being privatised.
In a statement earlier on Friday, the foundation said it had taken the step ‘to safeguard in the interests of KPN, shareholders, employees, customers, unions and Dutch society in general.’
It says the Mexican takeover is hostile because Slim chose not to first try to reach agreement with KPN on a merger.
The statement said: ‘The foundation believes that América Móvil should, in accordance with the rules and what is common practice in the Netherlands, open negotiations with KPN’s board of management and the Dutch government as soon as possible.’
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