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FEMSA Announces Accelerated Share Repurchase Agreement

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FEMSA announces an accelerated share repurchase agreement to repurchase $400 million of its American Depositary Shares, enhancing capital returns to shareholders.
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An accelerated share repurchase (ASR) agreement is a significant financial maneuver that can have a direct impact on a company's stock price and perceived market value. By repurchasing $400 million of its ADS, FEMSA is effectively signaling confidence in its own financial health and future prospects. This move is typically viewed favorably by investors as it suggests that the company believes its stock is undervalued.

From a financial standpoint, the repurchase will reduce the number of shares outstanding, potentially increasing the earnings per share (EPS) and the return on equity (ROE), both of which are key metrics that investors use to gauge a company's profitability and financial performance. However, it's also important to consider the opportunity cost of this capital allocation. The funds used for the ASR could have been invested in growth initiatives or used to pay down debt, which might offer a higher long-term return.

Moreover, the initial delivery of approximately 20% of the ADS implies that the agreement includes a certain amount of leverage, which can amplify both the positive and negative outcomes of the repurchase. The final impact on the company's financials will depend on the average price of the repurchased shares and the market's reaction to the ASR.

The impact of FEMSA's ASR on the market can be multifaceted. For one, it may create a temporary upward pressure on the stock price due to the reduced supply of shares and the increased demand created by the repurchase itself. This can benefit current shareholders, including institutional investors who may see a near-term appreciation in their holdings.

However, investors will also be scrutinizing the timing and the rationale behind the ASR. If the repurchase is seen as a move to artificially inflate stock prices or mask underlying performance issues, the market's reaction could be less favorable. Additionally, the size of the repurchase relative to the company's market capitalization and liquidity will be evaluated to assess the potential for market distortion.

It's also worth noting that while ASRs are common in the United States, they are less so in other markets, including Mexico. This could influence the perception of international investors and analysts who follow FEMSA, potentially affecting the stock's performance on both the NYSE and BMV.

When examining the broader economic implications of FEMSA's ASR, one must consider the current economic climate and monetary policy environment. In a period of low interest rates, companies may find it more advantageous to finance share repurchases through debt, which can be a cheaper source of capital than equity. However, if interest rates are rising, the cost of such leverage increases, which could affect the long-term financial stability of the company.

The $400 million repurchase is a substantial investment back into the company and reflects upon its capital allocation strategy. This strategy must balance shareholder returns with sustainable growth. If executed properly, the ASR can be a tool for efficient capital distribution, but if mismanaged, it could lead to an over-leveraged balance sheet and reduced financial flexibility.

Additionally, such financial decisions can have a ripple effect on the industry, influencing peer companies to consider similar actions. This can lead to a trend of share buybacks, which might impact the overall market dynamics, including capital flows and investment patterns.

MONTERREY, Mexico, March 15, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Fomento Económico Mexicano, S.A.B. de C.V. (“FEMSA” or the “Company”) (NYSE: FMX; BMV: FEMSAUBD, FEMSAUB) today announced that, consistent with its capital allocation framework and commitment to enhance capital returns to shareholders, it has entered into a derivative instrument known as an accelerated share repurchase (“ASR”) agreement with a financial institution in the United States of America, to repurchase the Company’s shares through the acquisition of American Depositary Shares (“ADS”). Under the terms of the ASR agreement, FEMSA has agreed to repurchase from such financial institution an aggregate amount of USD $400 million of its ADS1. The ASR contemplates an initial delivery of approximately 20% of the ADS on or about March 19, 2024.

The total number of ADS ultimately repurchased under the ASR agreement will be based on the daily volume-weighted average price of the Company’s ADS during the term of the agreement, subject to certain limitations. The final settlement of the ASR agreement is expected to be completed no later than the third quarter of 2024.

About FEMSA
FEMSA is a company that creates economic and social value through companies and institutions and strives to be the best employer and neighbor to the communities in which it operates. Across its business units, FEMSA has more than 350,000 employees in 18 countries. FEMSA is a member of the Dow Jones Sustainability MILA Pacific Alliance, the FTSE4Good Emerging Index and the Mexican Stock Exchange Sustainability Index: S&P/BMV Total México ESG, among other indexes that evaluate its sustainability performance.

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1 Each ADS unit represents ten FEMSA BD Units, and the BD Units each represent one Series B Share, two Series D-B Shares and two Series D-L Shares, without par value.


FAQ

What type of agreement did FEMSA enter into?

FEMSA entered into an accelerated share repurchase (ASR) agreement.

How much is FEMSA repurchasing through the ASR agreement?

FEMSA is repurchasing an aggregate amount of USD $400 million of its American Depositary Shares (ADS).

What is the purpose of the ASR agreement?

The purpose of the ASR agreement is to enhance capital returns to shareholders.

Who is FEMSA repurchasing the shares from?

FEMSA is repurchasing the shares from a financial institution in the United States of America.

Fomento Económico Mexicano, S.A.B. de C.V.

NYSE:FMX

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United States of America
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About FMX

Fomento Económico Mexicano, S.A.B. de C.V., doing business as FEMSA, is a Mexican multinational beverage and retail company headquartered in Monterrey, Mexico. It operates the largest independent Coca-Cola bottling group in the world and the largest convenience store chain in Mexico.