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Thursday, February 28, 2013

TAKEOVERCHATTER-Failed Gardner Denver bid puts SPX in activist land, (NYSE: GDI)

SPX Corp's takeover bid for rival Gardner Denver Inc, which would have been an industry game-changer if successful, ended up putting the diversified manufacturer in a spot that many companies wish strenuously to avoid: Having a big-name activist as its largest shareholder.Ralph Whitworth's Relational Investors LLC disclosed an 8.8 percent stake in the industrial machinery maker on Monday, saying the company's shares and profit suffered from its "growth-at-any-cost strategy" and "excessive prices" paid for acquisitions.Relational set its sights on SPX in December as people familiar with the matter told Reuters that the industrial machinery maker was in advanced talks to purchase Gardner Denver for more than $4 billion, or $85 per share - news that sent SPX's shares plunging that month.Relational, which was not a shareholder at that time, felt the bid - which would dwarf SPX's market value at the time of less than $3 billion - was too big a bite and would endanger the company's stated goal of paring down to focus on flow technology.

Gardner Denver, Inc. (Gardner Denver) designs, manufactures and markets engineered industrial machinery and related parts and services. Shares of GDI traded higher by 0.21% or $0.15/share to $71.02. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $45.54 and as high as $76.57. On average, 1226690 shares of GDI exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 376659.