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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

RIL made 20 visits to facilities;revised offer twice: Lyondell

Reliance Industries (RIL) made over 20 visits to facilities owned by LyondellBasell Industries since making its first offer to buy the bankrupt chemical maker in November and twice revised its takeover offer, all of which now stand rejected.

Mukesh Ambani-led RIL had initially made an unsolicited, non-binding offer to buy a controlling stake in Lyondell in November 2009. In the first instance, RIL offered about $12 billion but subsequently revised it to $13.5 billion in January and a month later, raised it by a further $1 billion.

"Since that time (November), Reliance made two other non-binding offers," LyondellBasell spokesperson David Harpole said. He said Lyondell gave RIL access to its facilities to conduct due diligence for the possible takeover.

"LyondellBasell provided substantial due diligence materials, allowed for more than 20 visits to our facilities, and made senior management available for discussions."

However, RIL's offers did not find favours with Lyondell which yesterday filed an alternate reorganisation plan with a US bankruptcy court.

"...After more than three months, the LyondellBasell Supervisory Board concluded, based on a host of factors and feedback from key creditor constituencies, that proceeding with the present plan is in the best interests of creditors and the estate," Harpole said.

Regarding private equity firm Apollo Management, Harpole said the entity currently holds some of the $18 billion of the LyondellBasell debt, that would be converted into equity.

"Apollo also is one of three companies that will backstop a rights offering to raise new equity," he added.

Harpole said the hearing to approve the disclosure statement is scheduled for March 11.

"At that same hearing, we also expect the judge to consider motions to approve the equity commitment agreement and the settlement agreement for the committee litigation," Harpole noted.

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