Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Going Private

Perhaps we should spend more time in this blog on "going private" transactions. I think this is the first time I've ever even mentioned such deals here.

Yet it will only be a mention: a sort of IOU. I write-and-run. Landry's stock rose dramatically after Pershing Square announced its opposition to the CEO's efforts to take the restaurant company.

The chairman of Landry's Tilman Fertitta, proposes to take the company private in a $14.74 per share buyout. This means in essence that Fertitta wants to work for himself and a group of friendly known investors, not for the every-shifting multitudes of public shareholders who are always buying and selling stock. And not, presumably, for Bill Ackman.

Pershing Square says in a filing last week that it has economic exposure to more than 3.8 million of Landry's outstanding shares, or 23.7%.

"The reporting persons do not intend to support the transaction," it also says. Fertitta had been attempting to take Landry's private for nearly two years, going back to a January 2008 offer of $23.50 a share.

The $14.75 deal values Landry's at $238 million.

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