Brazilian companies Safra Group and Cutrale completed their acquisition of Chiquita Brands International Tuesday, taking the Charlotte-based banana producer private.
Chiquita agreed in October to be acquired by investment firm Safra Group and juice company Cutrale Group for about $681 million, or $14.50 per share. The agreement came after shareholders rejected a proposed merger with Irish produce company Fyffes first announced in March.
The companies had put the transaction’s value at about $1.3 billion, including the assumption of Chiquita’s debt.
Safra and Cutrale said Tuesday that affiliate Cavendish Acquisition completed the tender offer for all of Chiquita’s outstanding stock.
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The tender offer expired on Monday. About 84.5 percent of Chiquita’s outstanding shares were validly tendered in the offer.
With the tender offer completed, the remaining shares not tendered were canceled and Chiquita stock is being delisted from the New York Stock Exchange.
Chiquita, now a subsidiary of the Cutrale-Safra Group, said two executives would be leaving the company: Chief Executive Ed Lonergan and Chief Financial Officer Rick Frier. The company named its operating chief, Brian Kocher, as interim CEO.
The Brazilian companies haven’t said where Chiquita will be headquartered or whether they will keep the company’s 320 jobs in uptown Charlotte’s NASCAR Plaza office tower.
Chiquita was lured to Charlotte in 2011 with the promise of about $22 million worth of state and local incentives.
One condition was that Chiquita maintain its global headquarters in Charlotte for 10 years. Government officials haven’t said whether they plan to seek repayment of any of the incentives that have been paid out so far.