Thursday, May 24, 2012

Astral shareholders approve sale to BCE but block premium to founding family

The failure of Astral Media shareholders to endorse a special $25-million premium to company founder Ian Greenberg doesn't constitute a failure, chairman Andre Bureau said Thursday.
Shareholders overwhelmingly approved the $3.4-billion acquisition of the TV, radio and billboard company by telecommunications giant BCE Inc.
But inadequate support from shareholders prompted the company to withdraw a planned vote on the payment to Astral's president and CEO.
Even without the extra payout, Greenberg and his family will receive more than $100 million for their Astral shares.
They will receive $54.83 for each Class B share, compared to $50 available for Class A shares held by the public. BCE is also paying $50 million to get their hands on 65,000 "special shares" held by the family at $769 a piece.

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