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Whirlpool Backs Off AGA

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It would appear that Middleby has won the race to buy British oven maker Aga Rangemaster after rival bidder Whirlpool decided not to proceed with its bid.

US appliance giant Whirlpool approached Aga on September 1 and was in talks over an offer to match Middleby's £129m approach.

However, on Friday Whirlpool said it would not proceed with its bid.

"Whirlpool today announces that, after full and careful consideration, it does not intend to make an offer to acquire the entire issued and to be issued ordinary share capital of Aga," it said in a statement.

Whirlpool reserved the right to revive its bid within the next six months.

AGA in support of the Middleby offer said, ”The making of a firm offer by Whirlpool remains subject to a number of conditions and there is no certainty that any offer will be forthcoming or as to the terms of any offer," Aga said.

"Given the conditionality of the Whirlpool offer, the board of Aga believes it is in the best interests of Aga shareholders to ensure that the Middleby transaction continues to be executed on the current timetable to avoid any delay to completion of that transaction should a firm offer from Whirlpool not be forthcoming."

Whirlpool, which generates roughly $20bn in annual sales and is home to the iconic KitchenAid mixer, said: "In response to the announcement from Aga that Whirlpool has made an approach regarding a possible offer for AGA, Whirlpool confirms this to be the case.
"A further announcement will be made in due course if appropriate, but there can be no certainty that a formal offer will be made or as to the terms of any offer."

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