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Kresta Stalked By Chinese Suitor

Kresta Stalked By Chinese Suitor

Australia's biggest blind and curtain maker Kresta is being stalked by a Chinese sunshade manufacturer with a $34.5 million takeover offer.

A subsidiary of Ningbo Xianfeng New Material Co, whose major shareholder is Kresta's new boss Lu Xianfeng, is offering 23 cents a share for the Perth-based firm.

Kresta has advised shareholders to take no action in response to the offer while an independent expert's report to assess the bid is prepared.

"Kresta's target's statement and KPMG's independent expert's report will be sent to Kresta shareholders within 14 days," Kresta said on Monday.

The news pushed Kresta's shares banners roll up two cents, or 9.5 per cent, to 23 cents - their highest level in more than two years, according to preliminary closing figures.

Ningbo's subsidiary Suntarget is behind the offer and already holds a 19.9 per cent stake in Kresta.

Suntarget said it was keen to acquire Kresta so it could have a greater influence over the Australian company and enhance its business opportunities.

It intends to maintain the company's 700-strong workforce and its operations in Australia if its takeover succeeds.

The offer comes after Kresta in February reported a 69.7 per cent plunge in first half net profit to $565,000.

Mr Lu took on Kresta's top job just weeks later.

He founded Suntarget's parent company Ningbo, also known as APLUS, in 2003 and remains the chairman of the Chinese manufacturer, which exports to 70 countries and employs 800 workers.

Suntarget became a major Kresta shareholder last December when it bought a 13.88 per cent stake.

Kresta has made blinds for more than four decades and is the biggest window coverings manufacturer and retailer in Australia and New Zealand.

Its brands include Kresta, Vista Window Coverings, Ace of Shades and Mardo.


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