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Australia's API gets $561 million offer from Sigma Healthcare, rivals Wesfarmers bid

(Reuters) - Australian Pharmaceutical Industries on Monday received a non-binding proposal from Sigma Healthcare valuing it at A$773.5 million ($561.4 million), rivalling an offer from retail conglomerate Wesfarmers.

API earlier in the month granted due diligence to Wesfarmers after the retail conglomerate sweetened its indicative buyout bid to value the pharmacy chain at A$763.6 million.

Under Sigma’s cash-and-stock proposal, API shareholders would receive an implied A$1.57 per share, a 7% premium to its last close and slightly above Wesfarmers’ proposed bid of A$1.55 apiece.

API said Sigma’s proposal was in the best interests of its shareholders and was “reasonably capable of being valued and completed”.

It allowed Sigma to undertake due diligence to make a binding offer.

As per the proposal, API shareholders also would own about 48.8% of the combined entity.

($1 = 1.3778 Australian dollars)

Reporting by Sameer Manekar in Bengaluru; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman; Editing by Stephen Coates

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