Dole Food Co. is set to be taken private by its chief executive after the US produce group accepted a renewed offer for the business.
The US vegetable and fruit producer said today (12 August) it agreed to be taken private by Murdock after he raised his offer to US$13.50 per share. Murdock, who owns around 40% of the company, offered $12 per share in cash in June.
The accepted offer gives Dole an enterprise value of around $1.6bn, including debt. This is a premium of 32% over the $10.20 per share price of the stock before Murdock made his initial offer.
The transaction is subject to a number of conditions, including approval by at least a majority of the outstanding shares of common stock held by stockholders of Dole other than Murdock and his affiliates.
The transaction will be financed through a combination of cash and equity contributed by Murdock, as well as financing committed by Deutsche Bank, Bank of America and The Bank of Nova Scotia.
The transaction is expected to close during the fourth quarter of 2013.
Murdock took up the role of CEO in February after David DeLorenzo stepped down to run two businesses sold by Dole to Japan’s Itochu Corp.
Dole agreed to sell its global packaged food and Asian fresh businesses to the Japanese conglomerate in September last year for $1.7bn. The deal was completed in January.