Beyond accepts Navis takeover offer

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SYDNEY -- Australian TV production and distribution house Beyond International is accepting a takeover offer from Navis Media, a subsidiary of Hong Kong-based private equity firm Navis Capital Partners, the companies said Tuesday.

The offer of AUS$1.22 ($1.01) per share values the producer of programs such as "Mythbusters" and "Hot Property" at AUS$74.6 million, topping an AUS$68 million bid made Friday by Australian fund manager Mariner Financial Ltd. (HR 9/17).

Beyond said that the offer represents a 46% premium to the 12-month volume weighted average price of AUS$0.85 per share.

In a statement, Beyond chairman Ian Ingram said the board had reviewed various strategic options and considered a number of proposals from third parties.

"The other proposals presented to the board have either been less attractive for Beyond International's shareholders than the Navis Media proposal, or were not sufficiently certain to enable the board to properly assess them," he said. "We believe in Navis Media we have found excellent buyers for the business, and have achieved a structure which provides liquidity for the shareholders."

Beyond CEO Mikael Borglund will continue in his role if the Navis bid is successful, Beyond said.

Navis plans to partially fund the acquisition through debt facilities.

Beyond shareholders are expected to vote on the proposed takeover at a meeting in November.

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