Kuwait's Americana says no knowledge of Savola acquisition talks

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Kuwait Food Co (Americana) said on Monday that it had no knowledge of any talks with Saudi Arabia's Savola Group on a possible acquisition of Americana.

"The board and executive administration deny knowledge of any negotiations with Savola regarding an acquisition of Americana," the Kuwaiti company said in a statement to its stock exchange.

A recent meeting between the two companies was intended only to discuss the possibility of joint cooperation in certain fields and markets; the meeting did not result in any development requiring disclosure, Americana said.

It added that its shares, suspended since last Thursday pending clarification of the issue, were expected to resume trading within an hour.

Savola said last Wednesday that it had begun preliminary talks on a potential acquisition of Americana. It said it had attended an investor roadshow held by Americana's management, but talks had not yet reached a stage that would require disclosure.

Reuters reported in April that the Al Kharafi family, the billionaire majority shareholder in Americana at 66.8 percent, had hired investment bank Rothschild to explore a possible sale of the business.

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