Private equity firm KKR & Co LP will purchase industrial machinery maker Gardner Denver Inc for $3.74 billion, four months after the company put itself up for sale.KKR's offer of $76 per share is at a premium of 3 percent to Gardner Denver's Thursday closing price on the New York Stock Exchange. It is 39 percent above what the stock traded at in late October when the company said it was exploring a sale.Gardner Denver, which makes compressors, pumps and vacuum products for industrial uses, decided to put itself up for sale following months of pressure from activist investor ValueAct Capital LLC, which reported a roughly 5 percent stake in July 2012.New York-based KKR has been in the pole position to buy Gardner Denver after other private equity bidders who initially took part in the auction abandoned the process ahead of the Feb. 21 deadline for final bids, people familiar with the matter told Reuters.
Shares of GDI remained unchanged at $73.85. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $45.54 and as high as $76.57. On average, 1336840 shares of GDI exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 1888250.