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Thailand Stock Exchange to Probe Siam Makro Trades

Thai Stock Exchange to Probe Siam Makro Trades Ahead of Takeover
Signage for Siam Makro Pcl is displayed atop one of the company's Makro stores in Bangkok. Photographer: Brent Lewin/Bloomberg

Thailand’s stock exchange will investigate trading that preceded the announcement of the nation’s largest takeover bid, the purchase of discount wholesaler Siam Makro Pcl by 7-Eleven chain operator CP All Pcl.

Siam Makro’s shares rose 30 percent in the six trading sessions before CP All’s $6.6 billion bid was announced. The stock jumped 15 percent on April 17, while the volume of shares traded rose to 1.6 million, almost four times the six-month average. CP All, backed by Thai billionaire Dhanin Chearavanont, offered to buy Siam Makro for 787 baht a share on April 23.

“It’s our job to investigate any irregularities,” Charamporn Jotikasthira, president of the Stock Exchange of Thailand, said in an interview today. “We have seen it and begun the process to investigate that.”

The deal would be the largest on record for a Thai company and the biggest takeover announced in Asia this year, data compiled by Bloomberg show. CP All’s offer is 41 percent above Siam Makro’s average price in the prior 20 days, a record premium for a retail deal in emerging Asia, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

“No board member of CP All leaked the news on Siam Makro,” Korsak Chairasmisak, chief executive officer of CP All, said at a shareholders meeting today. “I don’t know the source of the leak.”

Suchada Ithijarukul, CEO of Siam Makro, wasn’t immediately available for comment after a call to her office.

CP All shares climbed 4.5 percent to 40.75 baht at 3:42 p.m. in Bangkok, poised to snap a two-day slide. Siam Makro declined 0.3 percent to 752 baht, heading for the first loss since April 9.

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