Presumably Pioneer will announce the revised dates for completion of the PepsiCo acquisition in the next day or so. As things stand the pay date for the deal remains February 24. This is despite the recent SENS announcement informing shareholders that the merging parties were still awaiting final feedback from the relevant authorities. At this stage it’s difficult to imagine that Pioneer and PepsiCo will make the February 19  deadline for the last day to trade in Pioneer shares.

According to Pioneer, “certain conditions” including the approval of “certain remaining competition authorities” have not yet been finalised. In a roundabout way they place the blame for this delay on the SA competition authorities. However, it seems a bit ambitious — or ill-considered — of them to have expected a decision from those authorities just four months after filing papers with them. It’s not as though the country’s large food companies haven’t got a grim history with the competition authorit...

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