Chinese Fertilizer Maker to Go Private

Crop-nutrient maker Yongye International Inc. (NASDAQ: YONG) has announced that a consortium led by the company's chairman and CEO has made a preliminary, nonbinding offer of $6.60 a share in cash to take the company private. The acquiring group will finance the acquisition through a combination of debt and equity capital.

The proposed price represents a premium of about 37.8% to the Yongye's closing price of $4.79 on Friday, October 12, a premium of more than 47% to the 30-day volume-weighted average price, and an 84.4% premium to the stock's volume-weighted average price over the past six months.

Others included in the purchasing consortium include an arm of Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS), a Hong Kong-based private equity firm, Abax Global Capital, and a Chinese firm called Full Alliance International Ltd.

Yongye makes a liquid crop nutrient from which it received virtually all its revenues in 2011.

Shares of Yongye are up 18.8% at $5.68 in early trading this morning, in a 52-week range of $2.60 to $5.90. The company's market cap is around $287 million.

Paul Ausick

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