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UPDATE 1-CEDC investor Kaufman "welcomes" Russian Standard offer
December 9, 2011 / 2:36 PM / 6 years ago

UPDATE 1-CEDC investor Kaufman "welcomes" Russian Standard offer

* Kaufman sends letter to CEDC board

* Says proposed combination “could make sense”

Dec 9 (Reuters) - Central European Distribution Corp’s No. 2 shareholder on Friday welcomed top shareholder and billionaire Roustam Tariko’s bid to boost his stake in the Polish vodka maker.

On Thursday, CEDC said Tariko-owned vodka producer Russian Standard -- which already holds a 9.9 percent stake -- has proposed to buy another 19.9 percent, and has also offered to help the company restructure its debt.

In a letter to the company on Friday, Mark Kaufman -- who owns a 9.6 percent stake in CEDC -- said a combination between the two companies “could make sense”.

“Tariko has a strong standing both in the wine and spirit industry and the banking sector. I certainly welcome his attempt to help build a better future for CEDC,” Kaufman said.

Kaufman, however, urged the company to avoid taking action which may “not be prudent”.

Last month, CEDC slashed its full-year outlook for the second time and a failure to outline plans to pay back debt sparked a sell-off in the company’s stock.

CEDC shares were down 3 percent in early trade on Friday on Nasdaq.

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