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Shareholders sue to stop acquisition of Harris Teeter by Kroger

Acquisitions occur when one company purchases another and are fairly common in Las Vegas and the rest of the country. Shareholders in the company that is being acquired may wonder how their shares are affected by the acquisition. There are a variety of factors involved that will determine the value of the shares once the acquisition takes place. In these instances, it is the fiduciary duty of the company’s leaders to ensure that the move will benefit their shareholders.

Shareholders in a grocery store chain that operates in eight states and Washington D.C. with 212 stores are worried that they will not receive fair value for their shares after the acquisition of the company by Kroger.  A class-action business litigation lawsuit has been filed by the employees retirement fund and names as individual defendants all members of the board of directors at Harris Teeter.

Harris Teeter has said that they may close the deal during the fourth quarter and will be proactive in defending themselves against the claims that they believe are without merit.

The company plans to keep its name and brands after the $2.5 billion acquisition, but shareholders worry that their interests will not be protected. They claim that Harris Teeter board members are placing their own personal interests over those of the shareholders.

This is not the first lawsuit that has been filed over this proposed acquisition. The first one was filed last month by a group of Harris Teeter shareholders against the company, Kroger Co. and Hornet Acquisition, a subsidiary of Kroger that is facilitating the merger. 

Source: Charlotte Business Journal, “Second lawsuit filed to block Kroger’s acquisition of Harris Teeter,” Jennifer Thomas, Aug. 9, 2013

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