Multiplex (company)


Multiplex (company)

Multiplex is a large Australian-based group of property and construction companies notable for its involvement in large scale projects. The group is involved in construction, property development, facilities management and property funds management (April 2007). [cite web|url=http://www.asx.com.au/asx/research/CompanyInfoSearchResults.jsp?searchBy=asxCode&allinfo=on&asxCode=MXG&companyName=&principalActivity=&industryGroup=NO|title=MULTIPLEX GROUP (MXG) - ASX Listed Company Information Fact Sheet] The group also owns and operates a portfolio of investment grade commercial and retail properties. It was founded in 1962 in Perth, Western Australia, by John Roberts. Within forty years it was listed on the stock exchange and had involvement in high profile projects, such as Wembley Stadium.

Profile

In December 2003, it listed on the Australian Stock Exchange with the code of MXG, raising a total of $1.2 billion AUD. Ross McDiven is the Chief Executive Officer. John Roberts died on June 8 2006.

The group employs over 2,000 people with operations and offices throughout Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the Middle East.

Multiplex announced in late November 2006 that it planned to create a European real-estate fund to increase profits. [cite web|url=http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&sid=avaNdnDg21FM|title=Multiplex Plans 356 Million Euro Europe Property Fund|work=Bloomberg.com] Multiplex posted a preliminary financial report on 22 February 2007 which announced the group's net profit of $295.6 million AUD. [cite web|url=http://www.multiplex.com.au/page.asp?partid=294&ID=319|title=Multiplex Group (MXG) Interim Financial Results for the Six Months Ended 31 December 2006|work=www.multiplex.com.au]

In January 2007 Multiplex faced a takeover bid which caused its share price to jump 17%. The $4.03 billion AUD proposal was never formally made and the potential bidder remained anonymous. [cite web|url=http://au.biz.yahoo.com/070125/19/12gtw.html|title=Australia's Multiplex gets bid approach, shares up|work=Yahoo Finance]

On June 11, 2007, Brookfield Asset Management proposed an acquisition of Multiplex which valued the company at approximately $7.3 billion AUD. [cite web|url=http://www.brookfield.com/newsroom/multiplexprofile.asp|title=Brookfield's Proposed Acquisition of Multiplex Group|work=http://www.brookfield.com] The offer to shareholders of $5.05 per security was supported by the Multiplex board of directors, including the Roberts family, [cite web|url=http://www.multiplex.biz/page.asp?PartID=3756|title=Your directors unanimously recommend that you accept the Brookfield offer|work=Multiplex.biz] who sold their 26% ownership of Multiplex to Brookfield. The offer also proved popular with investors, with Brookfield rapidly acquiring 90% ownership of the company by 31 October 2007. [cite web|url=http://asx.com.au/asx/statistics/showAnnouncementPDF.do?idsID=00779324
title=Notice of Compulsory Acquisition|work=ASX
]

Brookfield has indicated it intends to compulsorily acquire the remaining 10% of Multiplex securities and delist the company from the ASX from 12 November 2007. Brookfield published a statement to the ASX outlining its intentions following the acquisition of Multiplex. [cite web|url=http://www.brookfield.com/newsroom/pressreleases/r2007/resources/Multiplex/Brookfield_Bidders_Statement.pdf|title=Brookfield Bidder Statement]

Class Action

In December 2006 Maurice Blackburn Cashman initiated a class action against the Multiplex Group, alleging that from the 2 August 2004 until 30 May 2005 the Company failed to disclose, to security holders and to the ASX, the entire truth regarding the cost increases and delays in the Wembley Stadium project, breaching the Corporations Act. [cite web|url=http://www.mauriceblackburncashman.com.au/areas/class_actions/multiplex.asp|title=Multiplex Class Action|work=Maurice Blackburn Cashman.com.au] Multiplex has introduced a settlement offer, however as of 11 April 2007 the class action has not been resolved. [cite web|url=http://www.slatergordon.com.au/docs/MediaReleases/06-01-31%20Multiplex.pdf|title=Multiplex update lacks answers|work=slatergordon.com.au]

Extortion Threat

In early 2005, Multiplex became the target of an extortion conspiracy. Multiplex was told that if it did not hand over $50 million AUD a sniper would target crane operators on Multiplex sites in either London or Australia. The threats prompted a walkout by crane drivers on two Multiplex sites in Perth, Australia however the deadline for payment passed without incident. [cite web|url=http://www.abc.net.au/news/newsitems/200503/s1313204.htm|title=Perth crane drivers heed Multiplex threat|work=ABC News] The threat was believed to have originated in Sydney, Australia. [cite web|url=http://www.smh.com.au/news/Business/Multiplex-sniper-threat-started-in-Sydney/2005/03/01/1109546827114.html|title=Multiplex sniper threat started in Sydney|work=Sydney Morning Herald]

Projects

Multiplex's first project was the laying of a pipeline across the Mandurah estuary. Major construction projects have included:

*Telstra Stadium, Sydney
*Federation Square, Melbourne
*Perth Convention Exhibition Centre, Perth
*Wembley Stadium, London
*Westfield London, London
*Dubai Marina, UAE
*Chifley Square, Sydney
*Central Park, Perth
*Burswood Resort, Perth
*Northern Territory Parliament House
*BankWest Tower, Perth
*West Stand, Stamford Bridge Stadium, London
*Sentinel, North Shore City, New Zealand
*Latitude, Sydney

The Wembley Stadium project is currently the subject of controversy due to cost overruns and construction delays. Damages claims have been made against one of the construction sub-contractors. A section from the retractable roof collapsed during the construction in March 2006. No-one was injured, but the incident caused further delays.

Future projects

*Bishopsgate Tower, London

External links

* [http://www.multiplex.biz Multiplex corporate website]
* [http://www.brookfield.com Brookfield Asset Management]

References


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