BASF seen prevailing in Pronova fight after key holder accepts

OSLO Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:07am EST

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OSLO (Reuters) - A key opponent of BASF's (BASFn.DE) sweetened takeover offer for fish-oils maker Pronova PRON.OL has dropped its objections, raising the chance the German firm will get the 90 percent it is seeking.

Norwegian fund Odin Forvaltning, which holds 4.7 percent of Pronova, remains unsatisfied with the $734 million bid but considers accepting as the best option, the fund's Alexandra Morris told Reuters.

"This offer is far from reflecting the true value of the company," Morris said. "But the alternative is a prolonged fight, which is not in our interest."

She said she now expected BASF to get to 90 percent, its self-imposed threshold to complete the deal.

BASF raised its offer to 13.5 crowns a share this week from 12.5 crowns, seeking to buy in Pronova's expertise in the extraction of omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil for use in drugs and food supplements.

Some shareholders opposed the initial bid as it was just 4 percent above the stock's closing level the day before it was announced, but the majority of shareholders plus Pronova's board all backed BASF's offer.

At 1240 GMT Pronova shares traded 3.1 percent higher at 13.4 crowns, indicating investors expect the deal to succeed.

The deadline for acceptances is Friday.

(Reporting by Joachim Dagenborg; Editing by David Holmes)

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