UPDATE 1-Manila’s San Miguel says Pure Foods bids due July 15

* San Miguel owns nearly all of Pure Foods

* Pure Foods soars to lifetime high

(Adds background)

By Rosemarie Francisco

MANILA, July 9 (BestGrowthStock) – Philippine food-to-power
conglomerate San Miguel Corp (SMC.PS: ) (SMCB.PS: ) will receive
bids from interested buyers of its food unit San Miguel Pure
Foods Co Inc (PF.PS: ) next week, the group’s president said on
Friday.

“Submission of bids is July 15,” Ramon Ang told Reuters in
a mobile text message, when asked about the timing of the Pure
Foods deal.

He did not give further details.

Pure Foods, which holds the group’s processed meats,
poultry, livestock, feeds and dairy operations, surged to a
lifetime high of 345 pesos, rising more than triple in just a
month and after trading mostly flat in the last four years.

At its Friday close, Pure Foods was valued at 48.7 billion
pesos ($1.1 billion).

Sources previously said private equity firms Carlyle Group
[CYL.UL] and CVC and Philippine food firm Universal Robina Corp
(URC.PS: ) are among the bidders for Pure Foods, which has a
total value of around $2 billion, according to company
officials and market sources.

The 120-year-old San Miguel, which has been aggressively
moving into power and infrastructure and away from its
traditional food and drinks businesses which it dominated
locally for decades, owns nearly 100 percent of Pure Foods as
of end-June, according to a regulatory filing on Thursday.

San Miguel said last year it planned to sell a 49 percent
stake in Pure Foods, but a volatile market and uncertainty
ahead of May national elections stalled its plans.

In May, Ang was quoted as saying the group was planning to
sell 49 percent of its food arm and was talking to five
interested groups which he did not name. [ID:nSGE64O0BD]

But bankers advising potential buyers have said Southeast
Asia’s largest food and drinks firm could end up selling the
entire company. [ID:nTOE66106L]

Snacks and drinks firm Universal Robina, a unit of
Philippine conglomerate JG Summit Holdings Inc (JGS.PS: ), has
been reported to be eyeing Pure Foods.

Robina President Lance Gokongwei declined to comment about
the company’s interest when contacted on Friday.

($1= 46.2 pesos)

(Editing by Dhara Ranasinghe)

UPDATE 1-Manila’s San Miguel says Pure Foods bids due July 15