Administrators of troubled ARM Cement have extended the deadline for submission of final buyout bids to mid this month following requests by potential acquirers.
PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), which took over management of the cement manufacturer in August last year, had initially set Thursday last week as the deadline for the final bids.
The move came after suitors asked for more time to complete their due diligence and assess what would be a fair price for the Nairobi Securities Exchange-listed firm.
The extension also offers an opportunity for new bidders to join the fray that had already seen 14 firms offer non-binding bids, with some later shortlisted for the final stages of the buyout.
“The administrators, in consultation with the transaction advisers, extended bids submission deadline for bidders interested in ARM Cement PLC (under Administration) to mid-March following requests by several bidders for more time to allow them to finalise ongoing due diligence and put together binding offers that meet the administrators’ requirements,” Muniu Thoithi, a PwC executive and one of ARM’s administrators, said.
He could not disclose additional information at this point. The winning bid is, however, expected to be communicated to ARM’s creditors by end of this month.
A bid for the whole company will give the successful acquirer an instant presence in the local and regional cement market, with a need to spend more than Sh2 billion on upgrade of factories.
ARM operations in Kenya include a clinker and cement grinding plant in Kaloleni and a cement grinding plant at Athi River.
The company also manufactures, imports and sells cement in Rwanda through its wholly owned subsidiary Kigali Cement Company.
In Tanzania, ARM runs limestone, clinker and cement plants through its subsidiaries Maweni Limestone Limited and ARM Tanzania.
While the administrators did not name the shortlisted companies, they are believed to include Nigeria’s Dangote Cement and Oman’s Raysut that went public with its Sh10.2 billion buyout offer.