The Straits Times
Published on Sep 14, 2012

ThaiBev tycoon launches $8.8b bid for F&N


Rumour turned to reality on Thursday when Thai Beverage tycoon Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi launched an $8.8 billion strike for Fraser and Neave (F&N) - which could be Singapore's largest takeover.

There has been incessant market talk for days that a Thai-led bid was in the works and on Thursday, Mr Charoen, 68, finally nailed his colours to the mast.

His bold gambit puts him in direct opposition to giant Dutch brewer Heineken and sets the stage for one of the most dramatic corporate battles in years.

"I haven't seen something of this type of intensity since I started in the finance industry in the 1980s," said CIMB Research executive director Song Seng Wun. "This is not out of the ordinary on Wall Street, but here in Singapore, it is rare to have this kind of more intense tussle."