Volante has slammed Commander’s offer of a $1.01 a share as “absurdly low.”
The company’s board said today in an ASX statement that the bid for its shares grossly undervalued Volante and failed to recognise its strategic benefit to Commander.
The board instructed Volante’s shareholders to ignore the offer. Chairman, Robin Crawford, said none of the directors would accept Commander’s offer.
“The bid cannot be taken seriously and the Volante directors are unanimous in rejecting this low-ball offer,” he said.
In what appears to be an effort to persuade shareholders not to sell-up, Crawford added that he and managing director, Ian Penman, had been growing, rather than selling, their own stake in the company.
The statement did not say whether the two expected Volante’s share price to rise should Commander be successful in its takeover bid.
Crawford also said that Commander was well aware of the strength of Volante’s services business, which now accounted for over half of its profit.
“Clearly Commander wants to access these strategic benefits without giving Volante shareholders any value for them,” he said.
Arguing that Commander was being opportunistic, Crawford said the company was preying on Volante’s November earnings downgrade to justify the “low-ball bid”.
“[The bid] fails completely to take into account the growing strength of Volante’s businesses,” he said.
“Whilst our products business has failed to meet our expectations recently, we have taken steps to cut costs out of this division and will be taking further steps to improve margins in that business.”
A Target Statement containing Volante’s formal response to the offer was due shortly, Crawford said.
Volante hits back at Commander bid
By Tim Lohman on Jan 12, 2006 3:32PM