- Crown Resorts shares rallied over 16% and emerged as the top gainer on the ASX.
- Spark Infrastructure shares dropped after it unveiled a plan to pay a special distribution.
- Altium shares extended rally after it reaffirmed earnings guidance for FY22.
- Treasury Wine Estates shares rose over 5% on acquisition news.
- WiseTech Global shares fell after it released AGM updates.
The Australian share market witnessed subdued trade on Friday as there were no major developments on the domestic front. The ASX 200 hovered around the baseline as looming fear about rising inflation kept investors sidelined, while mixed cues from Wall Street further weighed on sentiment. The top gainer on the ASX was gaming and entertainment group Crown Resorts (ASX: CWN), while health care equipment manufacturer Nanosonics (ASX:NAN) topped the losers’ chart.
Stocks that dominated trade on the ASX today include Crown Resorts, Spark Infrastructure, Altium, Treasury Wine Estates, WiseTech Global. Here’s how these shares traded today.
Shares of Crown Resorts (ASX: CWN), Australia's largest gaming and entertainment group, rallied as much as 16.7% to hit an intraday high of AU$11.56 apiece on Friday. The Crown share price surged and topped the ASX gainers’ chart after it received a fresh takeover proposal from Blackstone, which currently owns 9.99% stake in the company.
The casino operator informed its shareholders this morning that it has received a non-binding proposal from a company on behalf of funds managed and advised by Blackstone Inc. and its affiliates. The transaction value of the deal is AU$12.50 cash per share.
Previously, Blackstone had offered a bid of AU$11.85 cash per share in March this year, which was further upgraded to AU$12.35 cash per share on 10 May 2021.
The deal would be conditional on Blackstone receiving final approval from the casino regulators in each of Victoria, New South Wales and Western Australia.
Crown has appointed UBS and Gresham Partners as financial advisers and Herbert Smith Freehills as legal adviser to manage the deal.
The share price of Spark Infrastructure (ASX: SKI) dropped 0.3% to touch the day’s low of AU$2.83 after it unveiled plan to pay a special distribution.
The company proposed that if the acquisition of Spark Infrastructure by Pika Bidco becomes effective, it will pay a special distribution of 12 cents per share (or 5.14 cents full franked) from the Spark Infrastructure Trust.
The Australian firm, which invests in regulated utility infrastructure globally, said the payment of the special distribution is subject to approval by the Spark Infrastructure Board.
Spark Infrastructure is being advised by Goldman Sachs, Herbert Smith Freehills and A. Brown and Company on the deal.
Shares of Altium (ASX: ALU) extended rally for a second straight session on Friday after the software company reaffirmed its earnings guidance for 2022 financial year. The stock price surged as much as 6.4% to hit a 52-week high of AU$43.69 today, after rising over 5% in the previous session.
The company’s CEO, Aram Mirkazemi, on Thursday told investors that the company was on track to achieve its guidance in FY22. The company has committed to achieve 16-20% growth in revenue and an underlying EBITDA margin of 34-36%, Mirkazemi said while speaking at the Annual General Meeting (AGM).
The company did not disclose how the business has performed so far this fiscal, but did offer some details on key drivers. The software company believes that rise in demand for smart manufacturing will boost revenue.
Treasury Wine Estates
Shares of Treasury Wine Estates (ASX: TWE) also extended rally for the second day, having climbed as much as 5.5% to AU$12.18 during the day’s trade so far. The stock price gained momentum after the global winemaking and distribution business announced the acquisition of Frank Family Vineyards on Thursday.
The beverage company has inked a pact to buy US-based luxury wine business Frank Family Vineyards (FFV) for US$315 million. The deal, which is expected to be completed in December 2021, would be financed through a combination of debt and cash, including proceeds from recent US asset divestments.
Shares of WiseTech Global (ASX: WTC) fell 4.5% to hit an intraday low of AU$56.05 after it reaffirmed its revenue and earnings guidance at its Annual General Meeting (AGM) today.
Speaking at the AGM, CEO Richard White said the company expects to report revenue growth of 18-25%, and EBITDA growth of 26-38% in 2022 financial year.
He further informed that the company is on track to exceed its cost reduction run rate target of AU$20 -AU$30 million, coming in at around AU$40 million in FY22.