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Asciano investors have approved the ports and rail group's $9.05 billion takeover, with more than 99 per cent of votes cast in favour of the deal.
Asciano chairman Malcolm Broomhead told investors at a meeting in Melbourne pm Friday that he expected the deal to be completed by mid-August, following delays to regulatory approvals and a court battle over the company's 50-50 joint venture with logistics group ACFS.
"Be assured that we are working with the consortium partners to address all the outstanding issues and to move to completion of the transaction as soon as practically possible," Mr Broomhead said.
The NSW Supreme Court's hearing on the ACFS dispute is expected to conclude today but a judgement is not expected for several weeks.
ACFS has asked the court to halt the takeover, which would see Asciano's 50 per cent stake in the joint venture sold to Brookfield Infrastructure and several infrastructure funds, until it agrees to a new joint venture structure.
Qube and Brookfield are understood to be considering selling part or all of Asciano's 50 per cent stake in the ACFS logistics joint venture back to ACFS, to secure the logistics group's support for the takeover and give it majority control.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has also raised concerns on the vertical integration that would result from Brookfield and its partners taking Asciano's 50 per cent stake in the ACFS joint venture and Qube acquiring 50 per cent of Asciano's Patrick container terminal operations.
Total Asciano votes cast in favour of the takeover reached 99.85 per cent or 369.9 million, with only 0.15 per cent of votes cast against the deal.
If Asciano resolves the court case and receives the necessary approvals from the Foreign Investment Review Board and the ACCC, the takeover is expected to receive Federal Court approval on July 28.
Investors are expected to receive $9.15 in cash for each Asciano share they hold on August 19.
This article first appeared on www.afr.com
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