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Predator may become prey

Thursday, 10 Apr 2008 ( #355 ) - MELBOURNE, Victoria, Australia
Local News Story
Transport infrastructure group Asciano, once touted as planning an ambitious takeover of Brambles, a company three times its size, has sold its stake in the pallet supplier ( News #325).

MD Mark Rowsthorn announced last week that the company’s remaining stake of 48,7 million shares in Brambles had been sold at a disappointing loss.

The company said it expected the impact of the Brambles sale on its 2007/08 full-year results to be a loss of about AUD85 million before tax and funding costs.

The bulk of the proceeds from the share sale would be used to retire a AUD406 million facility to improve the group's overall level of gearing and enhance balance sheet flexibility.

Rowsthorn said the sale will allow Asciano to focus on its core business and pursue growth initiatives within its existing operations.

Meanwhile, a report in WorldCargo News Online this week speculates that Asciano itself may become a target for takeover as a result of losses reported in its first six months of trading and a floundering share price.
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