Ainsworth deal to be reviewed by Takeover Panel

Len Ainsworth’s decision to sell the majority of his stake to Novomatic may be looked over by the Australian Takeovers Panel for review, according to a media release from the panel.

An application from Australian securities watchdog, ASIC was sent to The Panel on Monday, seeking to prevent Ainsworth’s wife, who is AGT’s second largest stakeholder, to use her stake to influence a shareholder vote on the deal.

Ainsworth announced in February 2016 that its founder and chairman, Len Ainsworth had entered into a sale and purchase agreement with Novomatic AG, subject to shareholder approval.

In an announcement on May 4, 2016, AGI dispatched a notice of meeting to its shareholders, which disclosed that no shareholders at the time were excluded from voting on the sale.

However, ASIC has argued that Mrs Ainsworth should be exluded from voting in favor of the share sale transaction.

“ASIC submits (among other things) that Mr and Mrs Ainsworth have a relevant agreement or are acting in connection with the share sale transaction, and accordingly, Mrs Ainsworth is an associate of Mr Ainsworth and should be excluded from voting in favor of the share sale transaction.”

AGI released an announcement later in the day saying it is seeking legal advice in respect to the application.