Australian gaming machine manufacturer Ainsworth Game Technology has announced that its next general meeting will include a vote on the proposed $473.3 million deal to sell a controlling stake of its shares to Austrian rival Novomatic.
The gathering on June 27 will see shareholders asked to approve the sale of the 52.52% stake owned by founder and Chairman Len Ainsworth to Gumpoldskirchen-based Novomatic. If successful, Ainsworth Game Technology revealed that it would retain a small number of shares subject to employee options under the Len Ainsworth Option Share Trust while additionally maintaining its listing on the Australian Securities Exchange.
Sydney-based Ainsworth Game Technology first revealed the proposed transaction involving 172.1 million shares in February with its directors recommending the tender three months later.
“At the general meeting, Ainsworth Game Technology will determine the outcome of the proposed resolution to approve the sale of Mr Ainsworth’s shares in Ainsworth Game Technology to Novomatic,” read a statement from Ainsworth Game Technology. “The independent directors of Ainsworth Game Technology confirm their recommendations in favour of the proposed resolution in the absence of a superior proposal.”
Should shareholders approve the transaction, Ainsworth Game Technology declared that its current board and management teams would remain in place with Novomatic nominating additional directors.
Ainsworth Game Technology also declared that Margarete Ainsworth, who is the wife of Len Ainsworth and holds an 8.9% stake in the firm through her Votraint entity, will not be participating in the vote as per an agreement with Australia’s Takeovers Panel and has withdrawn a previously lodged online ballot.
“If the transaction for the sale of Mr Ainsworth’s shares in Ainsworth Game Technology completes, Mr Ainsworth and Votraint’s combined holding in Ainsworth Game Technology will be 10.15%,” read the statement from Ainsworth Game Technology. “This could represent a blocking stake for the purposes of Chapter 6A of the Corporations Act 2001 meaning that the likelihood of a takeover may be reduced.”