Anglo-Dutch consumer goods giant Unilever PLC has increased its stake in the Indian arm Hindustan Unilever Ltd (HUL) to 67.28 per cent, following an open offer which commenced on June 21 and closed yesterday.

The company fell short of its target as it had planned to hike the stake in HUL to 75 per cent through the open offer from the earlier stake of 52.48 per cent.

“Based on the shares tendered which represent 14.8 per cent of HUL, Unilever would increase its stake from 52.48 per cent to 67.28 per cent,” Unilever PLC said in a statement last night.

Shareholders of HUL tendered 319,699,278 shares during the tender period for the open offer, it added.

“The offer price of Rs 600 per share values the transaction at approximately Rs 191.8 billion (Rs 19,180 crore) or 2.45 billion euros (based on prevailing foreign exchange rates),” the company said.

Commenting on the development, Unilever CEO Paul Polman said, “We are pleased to have received such a good response to our voluntary open offer and that – as a result – we will significantly increase our stake in Hindustan Unilever, an excellent Indian business with a proud heritage and the potential for attractive long-term growth.”

The company said that on completion of the verification of shares tendered, the details of the final acceptance will be communicated by Unilever PLC on July 11, 2013.

“The payment for shares tendered and accepted will be completed on or before July 18 2013, at which point Unilever PLC will acquire full beneficial ownership of the shares tendered and accepted in the open offer,” it added.

The open offer was first announced on 30 April 2013 and is being managed by HSBC Securities and Capital Markets (India) Private Ltd.

HUL’s portfolio includes leading brands such as Lux, Lifebuoy, Surf Excel, Rin, Wheel, Sunsilk, Pepsodent, Closeup, Axe, Brooke Bond, Bru, Knorr, Kissan, Kwality Wall’s and Pureit.

The company, which employs over 16,000 employees, posted net sales of Rs 26,317.15 crore for the 2012-13 fiscal.

Shares of HUL were trading at Rs 600.75 on the BSE in morning trade, up 2.27 per cent from its previous close.

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