Dollar Thrifty Urges Hertz Make Bid or End Pursuit

Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group Inc., which has been the target of a takeover by Hertz Global Holdings Inc. for more than two years, said today its suitor should make a “compelling offer” or end the process.

Dollar Thrifty’s comments come after Hertz reaffirmed yesterday it wants to proceed with an acquisition. Chief Executive Officer Mark Frissora said on a conference call that Park Ridge, New Jersey-based Hertz is continuing to try to sell its Advantage unit to appease Federal Trade Commission antitrust concerns. Hertz made its initial offer in April 2010.

“It is time for a compelling offer to be made or for this process to come to a close so that the company can move forward under its standalone plan without the constant distraction of merger speculation,” Dollar Thrifty said in a statement in its second-quarter earnings news release today.

Dollar Thrifty CEO Scott Thompson added in an e-mailed statement that “while we believe that things should finally come to a conclusion, we are still open to the very real possibility of a win-win transaction with another larger rental car company.”

Both Hertz and Avis Budget Group Inc. unsuccessfully tried to acquire Tulsa, Oklahoma-based Dollar Thrifty, with Dollar Thrifty shareholders rejecting a Hertz bid in September 2010. Hertz renewed its pursuit with an offer in May 2011. In October, Hertz said it withdrew an exchange offer because of market conditions and Dollar Thrifty’s share-repurchase program.

Dollar Thrifty fell 3.8 percent to $71.61 at the close in New York. The shares have risen 1.9 percent this year after gaining 49 percent in 2011. Hertz slid 1.7 percent to $11.07.

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