Telecommunications providers Amcom and Vocus have stared down the final challenge in their battle to merge into a $1.2 billion telco powerhouse after a judge today approved the pair's scheme of agreement.
It's been a difficult six months for the companies, who agreed last December to merge following several months of discussion.
But the plan was set back a number of times by rival TPG, which attempted to scuttle the deal by boosting its holding in Amcom incrementally to an almost 20 percent blocking stake.
It meant Amcom and Vocus needed more than 75 percent of Amcom shareholders to turn up and vote in support of the merger - unheard of for a non-compulsory vote.
But a fierce campaign to shore up shareholder support - combined with Vocus' offloading of its 10 percent Amcom stake - proved successful last week, when more than 90 percent of non-TPG Amcom shareholders voted for the deal to go ahead.
The final vote was 181 million shares in favour and 53 million against.
"This is the big hurdle, it's the one we had to win and we did. It's a pretty clear and resounding vote," Spenceley told iTnews at the time.
Vocus and Amcom had been expecting TPG to submit a legal bid in a final attempt to stop the deal, but after the ISP opted against turning up to today's hearing the Perth court ruled in favour of the scheme of agreement going ahead.
The companies had prepared for TPG to argue that the 10 percent stake Vocus offloaded was tainted and should be excluded from the final vote count.
Vocus had offloaded the holding to unassociated parties to increase the chances of the deal going ahead - under the pair's scheme of arrangement Vocus could not vote in favour of the merger.
TPG has been contacted for comment on why it opted against pursuing the course of action.
More to come