Weak market conditions see Del Monte Pacific defer preference share offer

SINGAPORE - Food and beverage company Del Monte Pacific announced on Thursday (Jan 22) that it would defer its planned preference share offer in light of "weak global market conditions".

It said in an announcement: "The company has decided to defer the offering which was proposed to refinance the company's bridge loan with BDO Unibank, which partially funded the company's acquisition of Del Monte Corp's consumer food business in 2014."

The mainboard-listed company, which is also listed on the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE), added that it is making arrangements to extend the bridge loan.

It had announced on Dec 5 last year that it was conducting an international offering of up to US$360 million of US dollar-denominated preference shares.

Del Monte Pacific had said that "the expected proceeds of the offering will be used to refinance the company's acquisition of the consumer food business of Del Monte Corp earlier this year (2014)".

On Dec 15 last year, the company announced a plunge in second-quarter net profit to US$200,000, from US$8.85 million in the same period a year ago, from the impact of US$20.5 million in acquisition-related expenses.

Del Monte Pacific added on Thursday that the company will continue to monitor the financial markets, and "undertake the offering under better market conditions".

rachaelb@sph.com.sg