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Tuesday, August 12, 2014

TAKEOVERCHATTER-Safra takes banking prowess to the fruit stand with Chiquita bid, (NYSE: ORAN)

Brazilian-Lebanese financier Joseph Safra's push to diversify his $16 billion fortune out of banking and real estate is taking the world's richest banker to the fruit stand.Safra, the youngest sibling in a family whose roots in banking go back five generations, is teaming up with orange juice baron Jose Luis Cutrale in a $611 million bid for Chiquita, a U.S.-based banana producer that could fit well into Cutrale's orange, apple, peach, lemon and soybean business.If the unsolicited bid is successful, it would turn Safra and Cutrale, the son of Italian immigrants to Brazil, into the "global kings of breakfast," as one source with knowledge of the offer put it. That would give them more negotiating power over supermarkets.Chiquita, which agreed in March to merge with Ireland's Fyffes Plc to create the world's biggest banana supplier, said it is reviewing the surprise bid from Safra and Cutrale, which was announced on Monday.

Orange SA, formerly France Telecom SA, is a France-based company that is engaged, principally, in the provision of integrated telecommunications services. Shares of ORAN fell by 0.34% or $-0.05/share to $14.75. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $10.00 and as high as $17.43. On average, 641761 shares of ORAN exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 344449.