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UK: Credit Suisse, Freshfields and Holman Fenwick Willan breach Takeover Code

 |  November 5, 2015

The Takeover Panel has delivered a rare public criticism of three firms involved in a deal relating to the mining company formerly known as Bumi, five years after its ill-fated debut on the London stock market.

The Panel singled out Credit Suisse, Freshfields and Holman Fenwick Willan for three main breaches of the Takeover Code. The conduct of the firms “was sufficiently serious to merit the issue by the Panel of a statement of public censure”, it said.

A fourth adviser, JP Morgan, failed to satisfy two terms of the code, in conduct the Panel described as “disappointing”, but escaped public censure.

A public criticism is the Takeover Panel’s highest level of censure. It is only the second time in five years the Panel has issued this type of statement.

Bumi was renamed Asia Resource Minerals in 2013 and left the stock market this year after losing more than 90pc of its value. Nat Rothschild, the financier who helped found the firm, once described the venture as “a terrible mistake”.

The acquisition in question dates back to 2011, when Mr Rothschild’s shell company Vallar bought interests in two Indonesian coal mines from Bakrie Group and Bukit Mutiara for $3bn. Vallar later became Bumi, and later still Asia Resource Minerals, in a protracted series of wrangles between Mr Rothschild and his Indonesian partners.

Full content: The Wall Street Journal

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