South African food group Pioneer Foods is reportedly facing opposition to its plan to buy KWV from sections of the wine and spirits maker’s shareholders.

According to the Bloomberg news agency on Friday (3 December), KWV investors have dismissed Pioneer’s plan to table a bid for KWV worth ZAR827.8m (US$119.8m).

Danie de Wet, a former chairman of KWV and one of the company’s top 20 shareholders, said Pioneer’s ZAR12-a-share planned offer was “unacceptable”.

Chris Logan, another KWV shareholder, told Bloomberg that Pioneer’s proposal was “a joke”.

Pioneer set out its “firm expression of interest” to buy KWV on Thursday. It said the bid would represent a 10.9% premium on the weighted average trading price of KWV’s shares in the 30 days up to 13 October, when the company first indicated talks were taking place.

Pioneer, which is planning to acquire KWV partly with shares and with cash, said a “number of conditions” now have to be looked at before it considers making what South Africa’s local securities code deems a ‘firm intention offer’.

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The food maker’s proposal was reportedly welcomed elsewhere within the KWV share roster.

Antonie Jacobs, CEO of South African investment firm Zedar Investments, which owns around 36% of KWV, said Pioneer’s planned offer was at “a fair price”. Zedar, according to Bloomberg, also owns 42% of KAAP Agri, which owns 28% of Pioneer.