Metlifecare [NZX:MET][ASX:MEQ] and its wantaway bidder EQT Infrastructure are both claiming the upper hand after a court outlined the roadmap for reaching a resolution to their disputed USD 1.1bn scheme deal.
New Zealand’s High Court scheduled the first court hearing for 28 May and “indicated” the retirement village operator should file a separate legal proceeding challenging EQT’s decision to terminate the NZD 7 per share scheme on the basis that COVID-19 is a specified event that triggered the material adverse change (MAC) clause.
A source said the court’s decision is a loss for Metlifecare as the company had wanted the orders made straight away. But a Metlifecare spokesperson said the Court’s decision provides progress towards obtaining orders to hold a shareholder meeting to vote on the scheme.
A second source said Metlifecare is encouraged by the court’s schedule as it accommodates a potential scheme vote ahead of the company’s scheme termination challenge which could be heard around December.