Mexican Pepsi bottler Cultiba prices offering at 35 pesos/share

MEXICO CITY Thu Jan 31, 2013 9:00am EST

MEXICO CITY Jan 31 (Reuters) - Mexican Pepsi bottler and sugar producer Cultiba announced it would price its global stock offering at 35 pesos per share, which it hopes will bring in up to 3.94 billion pesos ($310 million).

Cultiba, which was previously known as Geupec, said in a statement late on Wednesday that it was offering up to 112,705,622 shares in the secondary offering.

The share price came in at the lower end of expectations, and the company, which reported sales of 31.448 billion pesos in the year through September, said it would use the money to pay down loans with Rabobank and Banorte banks.

Cultiba shares were at 39.50 pesos at close of trading on Wednesday.

The company exclusively distributes Pepsi-brand drinks in Mexico, in addition to producing and selling its own and third-party brand beverages. Cultiba also produces and sells sugar.

The offering, although not a new listing, is the first major deal for Mexico's stock market this year.

Stock exchange president Luis Tellez said he expects at least five initial public offerings in 2013. That would mark a turnaround for the bourse, which has struggled to attract new listings in recent years.

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