Antony Catalano. Picture: Paul Loughnan
Antony Catalano. Picture: Paul Loughnan

Fairfax shareholders vote for merger

Fairfax shareholders have voted in favour of the proposed merger with Nine Entertainment.

The shareholders approved the scheme of arrangement on Monday after the failure of an 11th-hour attempt to save the Fairfax Media name by former Domain chief executive Antony Catalano.

Mr Catalano was attempting to buy a major stake in Fairfax Media, in what is understood to be a precursor to a rival takeover offer for the media company.

Mr Catalano had been buying up stock in the company at 65c per share as he moves to secure up to 19.9 per cent of the business, according to a report in The Australian.



Antony Catalano. Picture: Stuart McEvoy/The Australian
Antony Catalano. Picture: Stuart McEvoy/The Australian

Mr Catalano was the former boss of Domain Group, of which Fairfax owns 60 per cent.

At last count he held 1.2 per cent of Fairfax.

In a letter sent to Fairfax chairman Nick Falloon yesterday, and obtained by The Australian, Mr Catalano said he intended to have Fairfax "pursue a multi-pronged strategy to build and realise value for Fairfax shareholders".

The $4bn merger was initially flagged in July, with the competition watchdog already giving the green light this month after finding it would not substantially diminish competition in Australian news and media.

The deal faces a final court approval on November 27.

Fairfax head Greg Hywood expects the merger to be officially completed by December 10, while Nine says December 7.

- with AAP