JBS proposes listing shares in New York

Much of its revenue comes from the US
calendar icon 12 July 2023
clock icon 2 minute read

JBS SA, the world's largest meatpacker, on Wednesday proposed listing its shares in New York, in addition to Sao Paulo, offering a 2.2 billion reais ($454 million) dividend to coax investors into backing the longstanding plan, reported Reuters.

The one-time dividend of 1 real per share is conditional on the dual listing being approved, it said in a filing. Shareholders will decide whether to accept the proposal at a general meeting yet to be scheduled.

JBS' Global CEO Gilberto Tomazoni said it is possible that meeting will take place in 30 days.

He believes by December all steps to complete the transaction will have been taken so that the company's shares can start trading on the NYSE.

The proposed structure will use a Netherlands-based vehicle called JBS NV and have Class A shares with one voting right and Class B shares with 10 votes, JBS said.

A dual listing gives JBS a chance to broaden its investor base and an opportunity to raise more capital through potential follow-on share offeringswithout diluting investors, Tomazoni said.

This is based on the assumption the value of the company's shares will rise, helping it finance future growth plans, he noted.

Management has also repeatedly made the case that it would reduce its cost of capital and help its shares trade at multiples closer to peers such as Tyson Foods and Pilgrim's Pride, which it controls.

JBS was the first Brazilian meat packer to go public in 2007, the year in which it also embarked on a US acquisition spree starting with the purchase of Swift.

The US listing has been in the works for the better part of a decade, but was postponed in part due to a 2017 corporate corruption scandal in Brazil and then again amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

JBS gets the lion's share of its revenue from the US market, where it processes beef, poultry and pork products for domestic consumption and export.

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