Gary Paykel, son of Fisher & Paykel's co-founder Maurice Paykel, says he has yet to decide whether to sell his shares to takeover bidder Haier.
The giant Chinese whiteware maker last night confirmed plans to offer $1.20 a share to buy out Fisher & Paykel Appliances, after owning 20% since 2009.
Paykel, who spent 52 years with the company until his retirement from the board last month, said he was not concerned at the prospect of foreign ownership and was confident the board would do the best by the shareholders.
"It's been a public company since 1979," he said. "All through those years there was always the possibility of a takeover, such as is happening now, and now's the time."
In a statement released last night, Haier said it aimed to retain Fisher & Paykel as a standalone company.
"We want the Fisher & Paykel Appliances brand to stay and we will support its growth as a global premium brand, with the additional advantages of operating within the Haier Group," said Haier director Liang Haishan.
Paykel said he saw the F&P brand as a big attraction for Haier.
"From my knowledge of working with Haier they say what they're going to do and they do what they say, and I can see with some knowledge of the appliance industry how the brand makes sense for them, both in this part of the world and further offshore."
However, Paykel said he would not comment on whether the offer price was acceptable, or whether he would sell.
"I haven't made up my mind," he said. "I'll just watch with interest and see how it goes."
The board was responsible for advising shareholders, he said.
"I know them all very well, they're all very capable ... I know they'll do the best for the shareholders and the company."
F&P Appliances shares gained 13c to $1.17 in early trading this morning.