Aramark Accepts $6.3 Billion Buyout from Investor Group

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Aramark Corp. (RMK) agreed to a $6.3 billion buyout by a group of investors including Joseph Neubauer, the chairman and CEO of the food services provider. The buyers will also assume $2 billion in debt.

Aramark said Tuesday that shareholders will get $33.80 in cash for each share, which represents a premium of 2.3 percent over the stock's Monday closing price of $33.05 on the New York Stock Exchange. The purchase price represents a 20 percent premium over Aramark's closing stock price on April 28, the last day of trading before the group made its original offer of $32 per share on May 1.

Aramark's board agreed to the deal and plans to advise shareholders to accept the terms.

The private equity groups involved include GS Capital Partners, CCMP Capital Advisors and JPMorgan Partners, Thomas H. Lee Partners and Warburg Pincus LLC. They plan to finance the deal using investment funds and borrowings.

Aramark spokeswoman Deborah L. Albert declined to comment Tuesday on how the acquisition would affect Aramark's work force in Philadelphia and around the world.

Headquartered in Philadelphia, Aramark has approximately 240,000 employees serving clients in 20 countries. It provides food services, facilities management and uniform apparel to hospitals, schools, stadiums and arenas.

The deal is expected to close by late 2006 or early next year, subject to shareholder and regulatory approvals.

Aramark shares fell 33 cents, or 1 percent, to $32.72 in early trading on the New York Stock Exchange. In the past year, the shares have traded between $24.35 and $34.95.