Brambles has agreed to sell its reusable plastic container business to a unit of Abu Dhabi wealth fund for over $US2.51 billion ($3.51 billion), earmarking most of the proceeds for a buyback and sending its stock sharply higher.
From the $US2.36 billion that the company expects in proceeds, it plans to return up to $US1.95 billion to shareholders. Its shares hit a two-year high at the open of trade, gaining as much as 8.1 per cent, while the broader market rose 0.2 per cent.
The pallets and container firm said it entered a binding agreement to sell its IFCO business to Triton and Luxinva, and expected to complete the deal in the second quarter of 2019.
Brambles said its buyback would run up to $US1.65 billion, while $US300 million of the proceeds would be returned to shareholders in cash, and the remaining amount would be used to repay the company’s debt.