June 24, 2013 / 6:27 PM / 4 years ago

Parmalat asks experts to value LAG acquisition

MILAN, June 24 (Reuters) - The board of Italian dairy group Parmalat said on Monday it asked three independent experts to give an opinion on the price it paid to French company Lactalis for its U.S. cheesemaking unit.

The request came just days after a court-appointed commissioner recommended that Parmalat cut the price paid by $151 million, to $623 million.

In a statement on Monday, Parmalat said the report of the commissioner did not provide "an unequivocal indication as to the acquisition price."

The Italian dairy group, 83-percent owned by Lactalis, initially agreed last year to buy Lactalis American Group (LAG) from the parent for $904 million.

The acquisition incensed Parmalat's minority shareholders, who accused management of acting in the parent company's interest by overpaying.

In May, Parmalat cut the price of the deal to $774 million to take into account lower 2012 earnings.

Minority shareholders want the price cut further.

Parmalat collapsed in 2003 in a multibillion-dollar accounting scandal.

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