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Cosmos sets delisting from PSEi

MANILA, Philippines - Softdrinks maker Cosmos Bottling Corp., the company behind Pop Cola and Sarsi, is exiting the local stock exchange.

The move comes at the heels of several public companies delisting from the local bourse due to their low public ownership levels.

“The board of directors of the company has approved and authorized the voluntary delisting of its shares from the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE),” Cosmos said in a disclosure.

Cosmos said its principal stockholder Coca-Cola Bottlers Philippines Inc. (CCBPI) and wholly-owned subsidiary Philippine Bottlers Inc. (PBI) will buy back the 16.15 million shares still held by the public at P1.758 each for a total transaction value of P28.39 million.

Shares of Cosmos were last traded on May 23, 2006 at P3 apiece. Its stocks were suspended from trading after the company failed to submit its 2005 annual report.

As of end-February this year, only 1.79 percent of its shares were held by the public, way below the 10 percent minimum public float requirement of the PSE. Cosmos said the tender offer for these shares will start on April 17 and end at 5:00 p.m. on May 16, 2013.

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In 2001, food and beverage firm RFM Corp. sold its 83.5-percent stake in Cosmos to CCBPI, which was then a joint venture of Coca-Cola Co. and San Miguel Corp. In 2009, Coca-Cola bought San Miguel’s 65-percent stake in CCBPI for $590 million.

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