Will the bid for the Maryborough Sugar Factory succeed?
Will the bid for the Maryborough Sugar Factory succeed? Karleila Thomsen

Sweetener in battle for MSF Sugar

THAI company Mitr Phol is a step closer to buying out Maryborough's MSF Sugar, after acquiring all shares held by directors.

The overseas company already held a 22% stake in MSF Sugar when it made an official bid in November to buy the remaining shares for $313 million, with a deadline for the sale looming in early February.

With less than three weeks until the offer closes, Mitr Phol now controls 26.9% of shares.

But unless it can gain a controlling interest of 50.1%, the sale will not go ahead.

In the absence of a better offer, MSF directors have recommended that shareholders accept the deal for $4.45 a share.

If the sale proceeds, there is speculation that a bio-mass power plant or an ethanol plant could be built at Maryborough.

After meeting with cane farmers who supply MSF's four mills, Mitr Phol president and CEO Krisda Monthienvichienchai told staff and media the company would diversify into biomass power plants and biofuels to increase value from its Australian mills.

In the company's next visit to Australia, Mr Monthienvichienchai hopes to meet the trade minister to discuss the proposal.



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