Cravath, Swaine & Moore; Corrs Chambers Westgarth; and Gilbert + Tobin have the lead roles in the proposed $3.5 billion takeover of Australia’s GrainCorp Ltd. by U.S. agribusiness giant Archer Daniels Midland Co.
GrainCorp., one of Australia’s largest wheat exporters, has agreed to recommend ADM’s offer to its shareholders pending completion of due diligence.
Decatur, Ill.-based ADM had built up a 20 percent stake in GrainCorp, and, starting last year, made a number of takeover offers for the company. But GrainCorp’s board of directors had rejected those offers, saying they undervalued the company.
ADM’s latest offer adds a dividend that upped its bid from $2.9 billion in December.
The deal remains subject to regulatory approval. The deal would give ADM control of about 90 percent of eastern Australia’s bulk grain exports. China, one of the largest customers for Australian crops, is expected to conduct a lengthy antitrust review. The Chinese Ministry of Commerce only approved earlier this week the $5.6 billion acquisition of U.S. grain trader Gavilon Holdings by Japan’s Marubeni Corp.
ADM is being represented by Cravath New York partners Richard Hall and Andrew Thompson and Corrs Chamber Sydney partners Braddon Jolley and Sandy Mak. They are working with ADM general counsel Marschall Smith.
Gilbert + Tobin is acting for GrainCorp on the deal with a team led by Sydney partners John Williamson-Noble, Peter Cook, and David Clee.
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