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Major Qantas Shareholder Objects to Takeover

A major shareholder in Qantas Airways has raised objections to an agreed US$8.7 billion takeover offer, say sources close to the Qantas board, the Australian Financial Review reported on Monday.

UBS Global Asset Management, which owns more than 6% of Qantas, had complained to directors that the bid from Airline Partners Australia undervalued the company, raising fears on the board of a move to block the bid, the paper said.

Although, UBS could not block the deal on its own, it might be able to rally enough support among other shareholders to push for a higher price.

Airline Partners, which includes Macquarie Bank, private equity firm Texas Pacific Group, Allco Equity Partners, Allco Finance Group and Canadian investment firm Onex Corp., has said it would drop its bid if it did not secure 90 percent of Qantas stock.