Cross-Border M&A Transaction in the Sugar Industry
FTI Consulting provided strategic communications support to Queensland-based sugar producer MSF Sugar during its takeover by Thai company Mitr Phol.
- Questions were raised about the Board's rationale for recommending an offer from Mitr Phol, already a 20 per cent shareholder, and there were suggestions that the Board had 'rolled over.'
- Concerns were raised over the future of MSF Sugar and commitment to the local community.
- Issues of food security and foreign ownership of agricultural land were present throughout the campaign.
- Operational concerns were raised that the new owners would reduce the price paid for sugar cane, close sugar refineries and increase costs on producers.
FTI Consulting’s Role
- Our team developed a grass roots campaign to strengthen grower support for the transaction, working closely with a local PR agency.
- The campaign was built using targeted messaging for different stakeholders, including growers, customers, employees, national and rural media.
- We assisted Mitr Phol to engage with local stakeholders, building trust and reassurance over operational concerns.
- Throughout the campaign the rational for the transaction and the Board's position was clearly articulated and communicated.
- Our work highlighted the Board's process and best practice approach to governance and shareholder interests.