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Monday, January 6, 2014

Battle for Australian dairy firm drags on as local bidder refuses to bow to Canadians, (TSE: SAP.TO)

A months-long fight for Australia's oldest dairy firm battles on into the new year as local bidder Murray Goulburn Co-operative Co Ltd refuses to concede to rival suitor Canada's Saputo Inc, which has already secured regulatory approval.Murray Goulburn said on Tuesday it may increase its stake in Warrnambool Cheese and Butter Factory Holdings Co via on-market purchases.The company also said it expects a regulatory decision on its A$530 million ($474.96 million) offer by the end of February.That is well short of the three to six months that analysts had anticipated the Australian Competition Tribunal might take to reach a decision, potentially breathing new life into the Murray Goulburn offer.

Saputo Inc. produces, markets and distributes an array of dairy products in Canada, the United States, Argentina and Europe, as well as bakery products in Canada. Shares of SAP traded higher by 0.43% or $0.21/share to $48.65. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $46.01 and as high as $54.62. On average, 286213 shares of SAP.TO exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 146129.