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Seven’s Compromise After Prime Vote Fail

After its $64 million acquisition offer was rejected by Prime stakeholders this morning, Seven West Media has acquired a large stake of the regional broadcaster instead.

Just hours after the vote failed Thursday morning, the Kerry Stokes controlled Seven revealed it acquired $54.6 million worth of Prime’s shares (14.9%) from Spheria Asset Management in exchange for $30 million new shares in Seven.

The move has made Seven West Media Prime’s biggest shareholder.

James Warburton, Seven’s chief executive, said the investment in the regional broadcaster will provide stability and support regional news and Australians.

‘While we’re disappointed with the outcome of today’s vote, we remain committed to Prime… As Prime itself has said, the business is under pressure to meet regional Australia’s needs and today’s outcome is an unfortunate result for them and their shareholders,’ Warburton said.

‘We look forward to continuing our longstanding relationship with Prime, delivering outstanding content for them in 2020.’

Seven’s failed takeover of Prime was put down to fierce opposition from two shareholders – Bruce Gordon and Antony Catalano.

The combined voting power of both Gordon and Catalano gave them a combined 26.16% stake in the company which was used to successfully block Seven’s bid.

The failed takeover comes on the same day the ACCC expressed concerns about aspects of the proposed sale of Pacific Magazines to Bauer Media.


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