* Extends offer for CF Industries until Jan. 22
* Has 'highly confident' letters from two banks
* CF says bid 'further away from being compelling'
* Agrium shares up 2.6 pct; CF dips 0.2 percent
(Adds share prices, CF comment)
TORONTO, Dec 21 Canadian fertilizer producer
Agrium Inc (AGU.TO) extended its hostile bid for rival CF
Industries (CF.N) on Monday and said it was sure it would have
the money needed to complete the purchase.
Calgary, Alberta-based Agrium said its $45-per-share
cash-and-stock offer for the U.S. company would now expire on
Jan. 22. It had been scheduled to expire on Dec. 18.
Agrium also said it had replaced its financing commitments
with "highly confident" letters from Royal Bank of Canada
(RY.TO) and the Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO).
A condition of Agrium's offer is that the company has
sufficient funding as well as cash on hand to purchase the
outstanding shares and pay other expenses.
CF, which has been fending off Agrium's overtures since
February, is itself locked in a hostile campaign to acquire
U.S. fertilizer maker Terra Industries TRA.N.
Agrium's $5 billion bid is contingent on CF dropping its
takeover offer for Terra.
Earlier this month Agrium said it planned to nominate a
slate of directors to stand for election at CF's 2010 annual
In a separate release on Monday, CF said Agrium's offer was
"further away from being compelling than it ever has been."
Shares of Agrium rose 2.6 percent to C$63.72 on the Toronto
Stock Exchange, while CF was down 0.2 percent at $86.28 on the
New York Stock Exchange.
(Reporting by Scott Anderson, additional reporting by Matt
Daily in New York; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)