UPDATE 2-San Miguel chief to buy into Philippine broadcaster GMA for $349 mln

Tue Jun 24, 2014 10:55am EDT

* Sale price 10.60 pesos/shr, premium of 38 pct

* San Miguel chief become single biggest GMA shareholder

* Deal involves common and preferred shares (Recasts, adds details of deal)

By Erik dela Cruz and Rosemarie Francisco

MANILA, June 24 (Reuters) - Ramon Ang, the president of San Miguel Corp, is to buy a minority stake in Philippine broadcaster GMA Network Inc in a deal worth around 15.3 billion pesos ($349 million).

GMA Network's major shareholders will sell a 30 percent stake in the broadcaster, Ang said in a text message, making him the group's single biggest shareholder.

GMA Network is the main rival of ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corp . GMA's biggest shareholders currently are three families who have been looking to sell at the right price.

"It will bring us to next level of competition," Felipe Yalong, GMA-7 chief finance officer said on the purchase by Ang.

GMA Chairman and Chief Executive Felipe Gozon said last month Ang would bring a lot of ideas toward boosting profit for the network, citing San Miguel's growth following its diversification in recent years.

The deal involves the sale of common and convertible preferred shares valued at 10.60 pesos each. That represents a premium of more than 38 percent to the stock's closing price of 7.65 pesos each on Tuesday.

Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co, the country's largest listed conglomerate by market value, had previously offered to buy into GMA, but talks failed on valuation issues.

GMA's shares gained as much as 14 percent after the initial disclosure of the deal. The stock later pared gains to stand 3.2 percent higher at the close on Tuesday compared with a 0.5 percent rise in the broader market.

Prior to the disclosure, the stock had fallen 9.6 percent this year. ($1 = 43.8600 Philippine Pesos) (Additional reporting by Siegfrid Alegado. Editing by Jane Merriman)

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