SYDNEY – The Australian government has approved the takeover of baby formula maker Bellamy’s by Chinese-government backed Mengniu Dairy Co., according to the Launceston firm on Friday.
The deal comes as authorities found it did not go against national interests.
The buyout by Mengniu, which counts the Chinese government as one of its shareholders and is one of the largest dairy companies in the Asian country, is worth AU$1.5 billion ($1 billion).
“The Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) has today provided written notice to China Mengniu Dairy Company Limited (Mengniu) that the Commonwealth has no objection to the proposed acquisition of Bellamy’s by a wholly-owned subsidiary of Mengniu, by way of a scheme of agreement (Scheme),” Bellamy’s said in a statement.
The acquisition of the Australian company, headquartered in the state of Tasmania and the country’s fourth-largest milk powder producer, was subject to a number of conditions, including shareholders’ approval, and Bellamy’s keeping it’s headquarters and majority of its board local.
The Australian government has previously blocked Chinese acquisitions, including large sections of agricultural land, as they were seen as undermining national interests in the context of a bilateral relationship complicated by political and ideological differences.