Federal Court Approves Nine-Fairfax Deal

By Glenn Dyer | More Articles by Glenn Dyer

The Nine Entertainment takeover offer for Fairfax Media will complete shortly after a scheme of arrangement was yesterday approved by the Federal Court.

The hearing ignored a weak last-minute attempt from former Fairfax property executive, Anthony Catalano and Aurora Funds management to try and frustrate the deal.

Justice Gleeson approved the scheme and said reasons for the decision would be published “in due course”.

At a hearing yesterday, shareholders were given an opportunity to oppose the scheme of arrangement to join the two media companies. Mr. Catalano and Aurora submitted separate notices of appearance.

Mr. Catalano sought the vote delay to allow investors to consider his proposal, contained in a letter to Fairfax chairman Nick Falloon a week ago Sunday, the day before Fairfax shareholders met in Sydney to consider the vote. More than 81% of Fairfax shareholders voted in favour of the deal at that meeting.

Mr. Catalano, who did not appear at Tuesday’s hearing in person, has the right to appeal until December 7. He told around 1% of Fairfax, Aurora Funds Management has less than 1%.

Fairfax told the ASX the Federal Court of Australia had made orders approving the scheme of arrangement between Fairfax and Fairfax shareholders and that Fairfax expects to lodge a copy of the order of the Court with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission today at which time the Scheme will become effective.

Trading in Fairfax shares will end at close of business today as well.

Trading in Nine shares will start on a deferred (when delivered) settlement basis from tomorrow. Entitlements will be worked out based on shareholders at 7 pm on Friday, November 30.

The Scheme is expected to be implemented on Friday, December 7. The new company will operate from Monday, December 10.

Glenn Dyer

About Glenn Dyer

Glenn Dyer has been a finance journalist and TV producer for more than 40 years. He has worked at Maxwell Newton Publications, Queensland Newspapers, AAP, The Australian Financial Review, The Nine Network and Crikey.

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