Overseas Union-led group extends F&N offer to Jan 21

SINGAPORE Mon Jan 14, 2013 4:19am EST

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SINGAPORE (Reuters) - A group led by Overseas Union Enterprise (OVES.SI), a property firm controlled by Indonesian tycoon Stephen Riady, extended its $10.7 billion offer to take over Singapore property and drinks firm Fraser and Neave Ltd (F&N) (FRNM.SI) until Jan 21.

The announcement came a day ahead of the expiry of a takeover offer by Thai billionaire Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi for F&N, which analysts say could be extended for the seventh time.

"The closing date of the offer shall be extended from 5.30 p.m. on Jan 14, 2013 to 5.30 p.m. on Jan 21, 2013 or such later date(s) as may be announced from time to time," Overseas Union's advisers said in a stock market filing.

January 21 could be the D-day for the F&N battle, effectively the final deadline for the two bidders to raise their offers under Singapore takeover rules.

The Overseas Union group made a S$13.1 billion ($10.7 billion), or S$9.08 per share, counterbid for F&N in November, higher than the Thais' S$8.88-a-share offer in September to acquire F&N shares that they did not already own.

Companies linked to Charoen own 34 percent of F&N.

F&N shares have been trading above both offer prices as investors bet that higher bids would emerge. The stock last traded at S$9.67, down 0.62 percent in late afternoon trade on Monday. ($1 = 1.2250 Singapore dollars)

(Reporting by Saeed Azhar and Eveline Danubrata; Editing by Ryan Woo)

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