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CEO Leads $5.8-Billion Bid for Food Services Giant Aramark

May 02, 2006|From the Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA — A group of investors led by Aramark Corp. Chairman and Chief Executive Joseph Neubauer on Monday offered to buy out the company, the world's third-largest food service provider, for nearly $5.8 billion.

The offer of $32 a share, a 14% premium over Friday's closing price, sent Aramark stock soaring Monday. The company's shares rose $5.79, or 21%, to $33.90.

Aramark said its board had formed a special committee of independent directors to consider the offer.

The group also included funds managed by GS Capital Partners, J.P. Morgan Partners, Thomas H. Lee Partners and Warburg Pincus, according to a letter written by Neubauer.

Neubauer said he and the rest of the senior management team would continue to lead the company.

The buyout would be financed through equity from funds managed by the four financial companies, plus approximately $6.25 billion in debt financing to be arranged by Goldman Sachs Credit Partners and J.P. Morgan Securities Inc., Neubauer said.

Headquartered in Philadelphia, Aramark has approximately 240,000 employees serving clients in 19 countries.

The company provides food services, facilities management and uniform apparel to hospitals, schools, stadiums and arenas.

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