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In brief: Murdock, family offer buyout of Dole Food

Wed., June 12, 2013

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. – Dole Food Co.’s Chairman and CEO David Murdock and his family on Tuesday offered to buy the fresh fruits and vegetable business with a bid that values the entire company at approximately $1.07 billion.

The Westlake Village, Calif., company said that its board will be meeting over the next several days to assess the unsolicited offer. It said that it is only in the beginning stages of evaluating the bid and has made no decisions about the proposal.

Murdock and other family members are offering $12 per share for the shares of the company that they don’t already own. According to FactSet, Murdock holds a 39.5 percent stake in Dole, which has about 89.5 million outstanding shares.

The offer represents an 18 percent premium to Dole’s closing price Monday. Shares of the fresh fruit and vegetable company traded above the offered price Tuesday, suggesting some shareholders expect a higher offer.

Appeals judges scrutinize NYC limit on sweet drinks

NEW YORK – A state appeals court panel had few sweet words Tuesday for a New York City health regulation that would fight diabetes and obesity by setting a size limit on sugary beverages sold in restaurants.

The four justices peppered a city lawyer with tough questions during a Manhattan court session aimed at determining whether health officials exceeded their authority in placing a 16-ounce limit on most sweetened beverages at city-licensed eateries.

The regulation would apply to thousands of fast-food joints, fine restaurants and sports stadiums, but not to supermarkets or most convenience stores. It was struck down in March by a lower-court judge, who found that the rules had too many loopholes that would undermine the health benefits while arbitrarily applying to some businesses but not others. The city appealed.

After the court session, City Health Commissioner Thomas Farley said that he remained confident the regulation will ultimately be upheld.

Commercial aircraft seen doubling, with efficiency

PARIS – Boeing predicted that the number of commercial aircraft in operation globally will double in the next two decades, with the bulk of some 35,000 new planes going to Asia, an executive from the U.S. airplane-maker said Tuesday.

Speaking ahead of the Bourget international air show in Paris, Randy Tinseth, vice president of marketing for Boeing Co., said rising oil prices are forcing carriers to think harder about efficiency, and that means smaller planes that burn less fuel. It also means design changes, streamlined air traffic control and improved navigation to shave miles off each flight.

The demand for fuel efficiency has eaten away at orders for the wide-body long haul carriers that are major profit-drivers for Boeing and Airbus, the world’s two biggest aircraft manufacturers. Boeing predicted that 24,670 of the 35,000 new airplanes to be delivered would be single-aisle craft, seating between 90 and 230 passengers.


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