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Friday, August 15, 2014

Cutrale-Safra calls Chiquita shareholders to start proxy fight, (NYSE: CQB)

The Brazilian Cutrale-Safra Group, which had an unsolicited bid for Chiquita Brands International Inc rejected by management on Thursday, started preliminary steps to launch a proxy fight in its hostile takeover attempt.Brazilian juice maker Cutrale and a banking and real estate conglomerate Safra Group, which teamed up to make a $610.5 million cash offer for the U.S.-based banana producer on Monday, asked shareholders of Chiquita to vote against a planned merger with Irish tropical fruit company Fyffes Plc and adjourn a special shareholder meeting set for Sept. 17."These proxy materials enable Chiquita shareholders to send a clear message to the Chiquita board that its failure to enter into discussions with Cutrale-Safra and its decision to reject the superior Cutrale-Safra proposal is simply a continuation of their track record of failed strategic decisions and shareholder value destruction," the Cutrale-Safra group said in a statement on Friday.Chiquita is attempting to close a merger with Fyffes, which the two companies announced in March. The combined market value of Chiquita and Fyffes is currently close to $1 billion.

Chiquita Brands International, Inc. (CBII), along with its subsidiaries, is an international marketer and distributor of bananas and other fresh produce, sold under the Chiquita and other brand names in 70 countries, and packaged salads sold under the Fresh Express and other brand names primarily in the United States. Shares of CQB traded higher by 0.89% or $0.12/share to $13.63. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $9.24 and as high as $13.68. On average, 501017 shares of CQB exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 1447506.