March 25, 2009 / 6:23 PM / 10 years ago

Cox Enterprises says offer price for Cox Radio 'fair'

* Says its $69.1 mln offer benefits shareholders * If deal fails, will continue as majority shareholder

* Shares still trade above offer price

By Bijoy Anandoth Koyitty

BANGALORE, March 25 (Reuters) - Cox Enterprises Inc, which launched a tender offer on Monday to acquire the rest of Cox Radio CXR.N for about $69.1 million in cash, said the offer price is fair, even as investors continued to bid the shares higher.

“We hope for a speedy and successful conclusion to the transaction,” Cox Enterprises spokesman Bobby Amirshahi told Reuters in an email interview.

Cox Radio was not immediately available for comment when contacted by Reuters.

Cox Enterprises, which holds a 78 percent equity interest in Cox Radio, launched the offer through its unit Cox Media Group Inc to buy the remaining stake for $3.80 a share, a 15.2 percent premium on the stock’s March 20 closing price. [ID:nBNG438296]

Cox Radio shares had jumped as much as 27 percent to $4.19 on Monday, the day Cox Enterprises had launched the offer, indicating that investors were expecting a higher offer.

Cox Radio said it would appoint a committee to review the tender offer and issue a formal statement to its shareholders within 10 business days.

Cox Radio advised its shareholders to take no action at this time. The tender offer is set to expire on April 17.

Cox Enterprises, which has a voting interest of about 97 percent in Cox Radio, will continue as the majority shareholder in the target company if the transaction does not happen, Amirshahi said.

Shares of Cox Radio were up 1 percent at $4.10 in afternoon trade on the New York Stock Exchange. (Editing by Ratul Ray Chaudhuri)

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