Takeovers, Freezeouts, and Risk Arbitrage
48 Pages Posted: 18 Jul 2001
Date Written: March 2001
This paper develops a dynamic model of tender offers in which there is trading on the target's shares during the takeover, and bidders can freeze out target shareholders (compulsorily acquire remaining shares not tendered at the bid price), features that prevail on almost all takeovers. We show that trading allows for the entry of arbitrageurs with large blocks of shares who can hold out a freezeout - a threat that forces the bidder to offer a high preemptive bid. There is also a positive relationship between the takeover premium and arbitrageurs' accumulation of shares before the takeover announcement, and the less liquid the target stock, the strong this relationship is. Moreover, freezeouts eliminate the free-rider problem, but front-end loaded bids, such as two-tiered and partial offers, do not benefit bidders because arbitrageurs can undo any potential benefit and eliminate the coerciveness of these offers. Similarly, the takeover premium is also largely unrelated to the bidder's ability to dilute the target's shareholders after the acquisition, also due to potential arbitrage activity.
Keywords: Takeovers, freezeouts, arbitrage, hold-out power
JEL Classification: C78, D82, G43
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation