ASIC has appointed Morgan Stanley to sell 28 million shares in Yowie Group (ASX:YOW) purchased in a takeover attempt that ASIC deemed contravened the Corporations Act.

As Stockhead has covered extensively, the iconic Australian chocolatier has been the subject of a number of takeover bids.

Wilson Asset Management took a 13 per cent holding in Yowie in March, buying 28 million shares. Keybridge Capital also attempted a takeover in March.

But ASIC found that a bloc of shares that Wilson and Keybridge bought “contravened section 671B of the Corporations Act by failing to give details of its deemed relevant interest in Yowie shares”.

And now it has asked Morgan Stanley to step in to sell them.

Wilson and Keybridge are barred from re-acquiring the relevant shares, 27 million for Wilson and 1 million for Keybridge.

Morgan Stanley will “use the most appropriate sale method to secure the best available sale price” for the shares and has three months to dispose of them.

The shares in total represent 12.92 per cent of Yowie’s issued capital.