TOP NEWS: BHP plans to distribute in specie dividend as part of merger

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BHP Group Ltd on Friday said its shareholders will receive an in specie dividend in the form of new Woodside Petroleum Ltd shares, following the merger of its oil and gas portfolio with Woodside.

The London and Melbourne-based mining firm said eligible shareholders will receive one newly issued Woodside share for every 5.5340 BHP shares they hold at the close of business on Thursday next week.

The holders of BHP American depositary shares will be entitled to one Woodside ADS for every 2.7670 BHP ADS they hold. This will be subject to the payment of tax, and ‘applicable fees and expenses’.

BHP will receive 914.8 million Woodside shares in total as part of the merger.

The in specie dividend is scheduled to be paid on June 1.

On Thursday, Woodside shareholders approved its merger with BHP's oil and gas business, with the deal set to complete on June 1. It will create one of the 10 largest independent energy producers in the world. Woodside shareholders will hold 52% of the new company, while 48% will be held by BHP shareholders.

BHP shares up 2.9% at 2,673.50 pence each in London on Friday morning. They were up 3.3% at R 527.99 in Johannesburg. Woodside closed down 3.8% at A$28.77 in Sydney.

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