Japanese Beverage Behemoth Kirin To Acquire Blackmores In $1.9 Billion Deal


The board of vitamins company Blackmores (ASX: BKL) has unanimously backed a takeover offer from Japanese beverage giant Kirin that values the Australian firm at $1.88 billion.

The mammoth takeover offer represents a whopping 23.7 per cent premium for Blackmores shareholders and would see Tokyo-headquartered Kirin take full control of the Sydney-based company famous for its supplements and vitamin products.

Though still subject to regulatory approval, the target’s board has unanimously recommended shareholders accept the $95 per share offer, noting it is ‘in the best interests of Blackmores shareholders’.

“The Kirin Scheme represents an attractive, all-cash transaction. The Blackmores Board believes the agreed Scheme Consideration represents appropriate long-term value for the Company and an attractive outcome for Blackmores shareholders,” Blackmores chair Wendy Stops said.

Listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange and founded in 1885, Kirin is an internationally-recognised beverage, pharmaceuticals and health science company and is best known for its portfolio of alcoholic drinks that include some Australian names like XXXX and James Squire, and Japanese brands like  Kirin Ichiban and Honkirin.

On the health science front, Kirin - which has a market capitalisation of $22.9 billion - owns the likes of supplements brand iMUSE and American brain-health nutrient citicoline maker Cognizin.

Blackmores CEO and managing director Alastair Symington said the bid from Kirin represented “an important day in the history of Blackmores”.

“The Kirin proposal recognises the strong leadership position that Blackmores, through its brands and people, has established in the natural health sector across the Asia Pacific region over our long history,” Symington said.

“Importantly it also confirms the significant opportunity that lies ahead for our employees and other key stakeholders of Blackmores as both companies come together to combine their focus on growing Kirin’s health science business across the world.”

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