t a special meeting attended by more than 100 shareholders, CEO Frank J. Fertitta III said the going-private transaction, for us$ 90 a share, had been approved. There was no shareholder discussion, and the meeting was over in about 20 minutes.
"I think you will all agree it has been a very successful 15 years at Station Casinos," Fertitta said, referring to the company's first public offering of shares in 1993. Adjusted for splits and dividends, the stock closed on its first day of trading on May 25, 1993, at us$ 12.54.
A group known as Fertitta Colony Partners LLC is taking the company private after offering an 8 percent premium to the February 23 share price. That offer was better than its previous bid of us$ 82 a share made December 4. The deal also includes the assumption of us$ 1.1 billion in debt.
At least six shareholder groups sued the company and the investor group after the December offer, saying it was too low. The company said in a proxy statement after the higher bid was submitted that it anticipated all parties would cooperate in seeking dismissal of the litigation. Some shareholders said Monday that they were disappointed with the deal.
University of Nevada, Las Vegas English professor Bruce Janoff said he would buy other casino stocks, such as MGM Mirage Inc., Wynn Resorts Ltd. or Las Vegas Sands Corp., with the money he makes from the transaction -- a more than a 30 percent return since buying the stock two years ago. "I think this industry is just about recession-proof," he said. "Gambling is always going to be good."