25 Jan 2010

Majority of Fonterra farmers ignore share offer

5:14 pm on 25 January 2010

Only about a third of Fonterra's 10,500 thousand farmer shareholders have applied to increase their shareholding in the dairy co-operative.

As part of a capital restructuring, Fonterra is allowing farmers to buy up to 120% of their current entitlement at $4.52 per share.

Fonterra says $270.7 million has been raised, which will be spent on reducing the company's debt.

In 2009, farmers voted to change the rules so that interested shareholders could buy more shares than what is necessary to match the milk they produce.

Some 3461 farmers have taken up Fonterra's offer to date.

They represent those keen to buy shares that exceed their milk production, as well as those who expect a lift in production this year.