Ichor Coal N.V. announces the disposal of its entire shareholding of 151,660,000 shares in Universal Coal plc at a price of A$31.5c per share through a private placement to a number of institutional investors undertaken by the company’s broker in Australia. Trade settlement is anticipated within 3 business days.
IchorCoal shareholders approved a sale of the company’s entire shareholding in Universal Coal to a consortium led by Ata Resources at a price of A$35c a share at the general meeting held on 7 January 2019. After Universal Coal plc announced recently that it had received a competing, non-binding offer at a higher price, Ata effectively withdrew from the process.
Given the imminent maturity of the IchorCoal convertible bonds, the management board and supervisory board took a decision to seek alternative means of selling the shares that could be executed quickly and simultaneously not destroy value. The opportunity to effect the disposal through a book build achieved both aims but required an accelerated process.
The management board and the supervisory board therefore unanimously support the disposal of the Universal Coal shares as announced today.
Although the company received support from its shareholders in January to pursue a disposal of the Universal shareholding, this transaction will also be tabled to the shareholders of IchorCoal at an extraordinary general meeting of shareholders (EGM) to be convened as soon as possible. In this EGM the management board will also outline the company’s intentions regarding the convertible bond redemption. Given the reasons stated above, the overriding need for speed dictated that the disposal be completed prior to this EGM but the company’s majority shareholder that supported the Ata offer already confirmed its unconditional support for the disposal at the EGM and executed an irrevocable undertaking to that effect.
The proceeds will be used to pay down debt.
This announcement contains information that qualifies as inside information within the meaning of Article 7(1) of the EU Market Abuse Regulation.