Haier still undecided about its Maytag bid

Haier still undecided about its Maytag bid
Date June 17, 2005
Section(s) Local News
By Daily News Staff

Chinese appliance maker Haier Group was still undecided about a possible bid for Maytag this morning.

Haier Group has been reportedly considering making a bid to purchase the local appliance maker.

Last month, Maytag agreed to be taken over by Ripplewood Holdings of New York with a $2.1 billion purchase offer that included buying outstanding stock for $14 and assuming $975 million of debt.

As part of that deal, Maytag was allowed to actively solicit other bids for a 30-day period. The deadline for that window is Saturday. After that, Maytag can still entertain offers from other interested parties.

Another bidder for Maytag could drive up the purchase price for the company. Maytag‘s deal with Ripplewood includes a $40 million breakup fee.

Asian news service Interfax quoted analysts Thursday as saying Haier would be unlikely to pass up a chance to purchase Maytag.

“Haier has a presence in the U.S. and Europe but has been hampered by the company’s branding problem,” Interfax quotes analyst Wang Tao as saying. “The long term goal of an acquisition of Maytag would be to improve the brand recognition of Haier worldwide.”

Furthermore, Wang says that Haier’s short-term goal for acquiring Maytag could be to get some of its assets listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

“Haier has in the past wanted to (be) publically listed in the U.S. An acquisition of Maytag would be a perfect opportunity for accomplishing just that,” Wang said.

Ripplewood’s purchase plan involved making Maytag private and removing it from the NYSE as a publicly traded company.

Other bidders, including Bain Capital, Blackstone Group and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts reportedly have been mulling bids, too.

Maytag stock was trading around $15.11 this morning.


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