UPDATE 1-Japan's Marubeni says to exclude Gavilon energy arm in takeover

Mon Jun 10, 2013 12:48pm EDT
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By Aaron Sheldrick and David Sheppard

TOKYO/NEW YORK June 10 (Reuters) - Japanese trading house Marubeni Corp said it will cut Gavilon's energy business out of its planned takeover of the U.S. commodity merchant, reducing the size of the transaction to $2.6 billion plus debt.

The trading company said in a statement on Monday it had modified the terms of the acquisition that was originally valued at $5.6 billion, including $2 billion of debt.

"Marubeni will acquire all of the assets and businesses of Gavilon except the energy business," the statement said.

The statement did not give details of the amount of debt being assumed in the revised transaction, but said the sellers would receive $2.6 billion in cash while retaining the energy business.

The move confirms a Reuters report on Friday, and indicates Gavilon's mid-sized energy business could now be on the market. Market participants had speculated Marubeni could offload an energy business not central to its plans.

"The interest was always in the grains, not the oil," one source with direct knowledge of the Gavilon deal said last week.

Omaha, Nebraska-based Gavilon's shareholders include investor George Soros, Dwight Anderson's Ospraie hedge fund, and Egypt's Orascom Construction Industries.   Continued...