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Bid for Mojo by Cooks Global Foods falls through

The bid by Cooks Global Foods to buy Wellington-based Mojo Coffee Cartel for $19 million fell through yesterday when conditions weren’t met.

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By Rebecca Howard

Cooks had offered to pay $11.7 million in cash, about $2 million in shares and take on $5.3 million of debt to acquire Mojo, which operates 36 cafes in Wellington and Auckland, a cafe in Chicago, Illinois, and licenses four stores in Japan and two in China.

The deal relied on Cooks raising enough money to fund the cash component, and Mojo securing a lease variation and completing acceptable March 2018 accounts.

In late August, Auckland-based Cooks said it planned to raise $20.5 million to fund the purchase, including $14 million of new capital, $4.3 million in new equity underwritten by Cooks Investment Holdings – associated with its executive chair Keith Jackson – and $2.2 million in shares it would issue to Mojo’s sellers.

Mojo shareholders had agreed to extend the date to meet the conditions to 31 October from 24 October, but “the conditions have not been satisfied and the agreement to acquire Mojo is terminated,” Cooks Global Foods said in a statement to the stock exchange.

However, it is “continuing discussions with Mojo shareholders and its own potential financiers with a continuing view to taking an equity stake in Mojo.”

It will update shareholders as those discussions progress, it said.

Cooks shares last traded at 8.1 cents and are up 62 per cent so far this year.