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AustralianSuper rebuffs last-minute Origin bid

Mike Taylor24 November 2023
trench warfare

AustralianSuper made clear that it had dug in on its opposition to the Brookfield and EIG-backed consortium looking to acquire Origin Energy.

The big superannuation fund said it would be rejecting the last-minute attempts by the consortium and voting against the revised proposed for Origin made public by the company board yesterday.

“This latest low-ball offer strengthens AustralianSuper’s view that the offer remains substantially below our estimate of Origin’s long-term value,” AustralianSuper said in a statement.

“AustralianSuper is resolute the value and future value of Origin is better in the hands of AustralianSuper members and other shareholders than a private equity consortium planning to short-change them.

“The Origin board itself has identified that ‘the transaction appears inferior to the existing scheme’ – which was scheduled to be voted on today and was ‘unlikely’ to succeed,” the super fund said.

“We agree with the Origin board’s position that it has “significant reservations as to the complexity, conditionality and differing value and potential adverse tax outcomes to Origin and shareholders”.

“AustralianSuper believes the ongoing energy transition has further enhanced the value of strategic energy transition platforms, such as Origin.

AustralianSuper is a long-term investor in the Australian economy and is open to providing capital to assist Origin as it prepares to transition over the coming decades, while delivering on our purpose to help members achieve their best financial position in retirement.”

“The challenge facing the nation as we work towards net zero by 2050 is not a lack of capital but rather a shortage of good quality investment opportunities.”

AustralianSuper is the largest shareholder in Origin with a stake of over 17%.

Mike Taylor

Mike Taylor

Managing Editor/Publisher, Financial Newswire

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