Family Dollar shareholders approve Dollar Tree deal
By Sruthi Ramakrishnan and Ken Otterbourg
(Reuters) - Family Dollar Stores Inc's FDO.N shareholders approved the discount retailer's deal to be bought by Dollar Tree Inc (DLTR.O: Quote), scuppering a higher hostile offer from larger rival Dollar General Corp (DG.N: Quote).
About 74 percent of the total outstanding shares of Family Dollar, the No.2 U.S. discount retailer, were voted in favor of the deal on Thursday.
Family Dollar accepted its smaller rival's cash-and-stock offer of $8.5 billion in July and later rejected a $9.1 billion all-cash offer from Dollar General, citing antitrust concerns. The biggest U.S. discount retailer then took its offer directly to Family Dollar shareholders.
Dollar Tree later threatened to walk away after Family Dollar shareholders twice postponed voting to approve the deal.
"... today was the drop dead day. Shareholders got nervous," Edward Jones analyst Brian Yarbrough said.
The Dollar Tree deal was the right one for shareholders as it has a better chance of passing regulatory muster, Family Dollar Chief Executive Howard Levine said, showing little emotion in discussing the sale of the company his father founded.
Dollar General CEO Rick Dreiling called the vote a loss for consumers and Family Dollar shareholders.
Levine said he expects the Federal Trade Commission to approve the deal by the end of March. Continued...