US: Bedford the favourite as two Vita offers withdrawn
US seafood-to-honey firm Vita Food Products is pressing on with plans to merge with an entity owned by the company's largest shareholder after two rivals bids came in for the business and were subsequently withdrawn.
Last month, Vita, which sells a range of products including salmon, salsa and salad dressings, said it was to join up with a business owned by director Howard Bedford.
Vita's board, however, remained open to solicit alternative deals and today (14 April),the company said two other bids had come in for the business but had since been taken off the table.
One party gave the Vita board a written indication of interest to acquire the business at a price of $1.16 per share by the 1 April deadline. By 9 April, after talks with a special committee formed to consider any rival offers and with Bedford, the party withdrew its offer.
A second unnamed suitor made an oral offer of $1.25 per share and was subject to the party's ability to obtain financing. The party subsequently withdrew its proposal, Vita said.
Under Bedford plans, each Vita share will be converted into the right to receive a cash payment of US$1.05 a share. Under the deal, any Vita executive that opts to keep shares will have to enter into a "stockholders agreement" with Bedford.
"00The company is continuing to work with Mr. Bedford to complete the merger in a timely manner, subject to satisfaction of the conditions set forth in the merger agreement," Vita said. "As required by the merger agreement, Mr. Bedford has provided evidence to the company of the availability of the funds necessary to consummate the merger."
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