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merger with jupiters casino

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    Tabcorp joins UNiTAB in wooing Jupiters
    January 11 2003

    Popular ... Jupiters remains in talks with UNiTAB about a possible $1.7 billion merger. Photo: Phil Carrick

    Victoria's Tabcorp Holdings has set its sights on Queensland gaming and hotel group Jupiters, with the pair now talking about a merger.

    Jupiters last night said that following an approach by Tabcorp, discussions which could lead to a change of control of Jupiters had begun.

    "These discussions are very preliminary and are incomplete.

    "No agreement has been reached and whether any will be is uncertain at this stage," Jupiters said.

    "If these discussions result in any agreement between the parties, a further announcement will be made."



    Tabcorp later said it had begun discussions with Jupiters with a view to a merger of the two companies.

    "It is envisaged that the merger would be subject to a number of conditions, including board approvals and the approval of the Queensland Government," Tabcorp said.

    Jupiters remains in talks with Queensland-based UNiTAB about a possible, $1.7 billion merger of the two Queensland companies to create a powerhouse to rival Victorian gaming group Tabcorp.

    At the time the UNiTAB discussions were announced last month, analysts tipped that the merger could force Tabcorp to reveal its hand if it had any plans to make a move on Jupiters.

    Jupiters yesterday said its discussions with UNiTAB were continuing.

    "The parties are working towards an agreement on merger terms by the end of January; however, it is also uncertain as to whether this timeframe will be met or an agreement as to appropriate merger terms will be reached."

    Jupiters managing director Rob Hines refused to expand on the comments made by the company in its release to the Australian Stock Exchange.

    "It is just too new ... we won't be making any more comment," he said.

    The talks with Tabcorp were revealed after the market closed yesterday.

    Jupiters ended steady at $5.40 and Tabcorp gained 12c to close at $10.76.

    Shares in UNiTAB, formerly known as TAB Queensland, fell 11c to $4.43.


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