Lan Shareholders Approve $3.2 Billion Takeover of Tam

Lan Airlines SA (LAN)’s shareholders approved the takeover of Brazil’s Tam SA (TAMM4) in a deal that will create the world’s second-largest airline by market value.

The combined company will have a total market value of $11 billion, the second-biggest after Air China Ltd’s $11.3 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Brazil antitrust regulators approved the takeover on Dec. 14, after Chile’s antitrust court approved the deal in September with conditions.

“We are setting the foundations for an airline that will definitely have a major presence in the world’s skies,” Chairman Jorge Awad told reporters after the shareholder vote today. “We will attend more than 60 million passengers per year, reach 26 countries and have more than 100 destinations.”

Tam shareholders will receive 0.9 Lan shares for each share they own in Tam, the companies said in August 2010, when they announced the $3.2 billion deal. Shareholders today also approved issuing 147 million new shares that will be used for the swap.

Lan has asked Chile’s Supreme Court to discard the antitrust court’s conditions on the tie-up, which include giving up flights between Santiago and Lima that are used to connect to the U.S. The airline expects a ruling from the Supreme Court in January, Awad said at the meeting.

Lan shares gained 0.7 percent to 12,420 pesos at 4:21 p.m. in Santiago, while Tam rose 0.9 percent to 37.25 reais in Sao Paulo.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eduardo Thomson in Santiago at ethomson1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Papadopoulos at papadopoulos@bloomberg.net

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