By Favour Nnabugwu
Diageo, is a global leader in beverage alcohol with iconic brands in spirits, beer and wine has expressed its interest to increase its stake in Guinness Nigeria plc to 70 percent from the current 54.3 percent

The company in a statement Wednesday said, it has informed the Board of Directors Guinness Nigeria and also notified the Nigerian Stock Exchange of its intention to up its equity stake in Guinness Nigeria to 70 percent.

According to Diageo, it intends to launch a partial tender offer at a price not higher than NGN 175 per share in cash, giving all shareholders the opportunity to elect to sell some or all of their shares in Guinness Nigeria through its wholly owned subsidiary Guinness Overseas Limited on receiving regulatory approval to go ahead

According to the company, “At the maximum offer price of NGN 175 per share, the proposed offer would represent a premium of 36 per cent to the 30-day volume weighted average share price and 40 per cent to Guinness Nigeria’s closing share price on 8 September 2015. Guinness Nigeria currently has 1,505,888,188 ordinary shares in issue.”

“Guinness Overseas may also seek to acquire shares in the market at a price not higher than the offer price of NGN 175 per share. Diageo would encourage those shareholders that wish to divest their holdings in Guinness Nigeria to make contact with Stanbic IBTC Stockbrokers Limited.”

The statement reads, “The announcement today of Guinness Overseas’ intention to make an offer does not constitute the announcement of an offer and creates no obligation on Guinness Overseas or Diageo to make an offer.”

“Accordingly, shareholders in Guinness Nigeria are advised that there can be no certainty that any offer will be made, nor as to the price or terms of any offer that may be made. Further developments will be communicated to shareholders in due course.”

In the light of this, Diageo advised Guinness Nigeria shareholders to exercise caution in dealing in Guinness Nigeria shares until further information is provided.

Diageo has built a strong platform for growth through investing in our brands and route to consumer. Over the last five years we have made acquisitions in brands and local distribution while doubling the size of our luxury business.

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