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Club Med Buyout Wins Board Backing After Sweetened Offer

Gaillon Invest, the holding company created by Axa Private Equity and Fosun International Ltd. to buy Club Mediterranee SA, secured the backing of more shareholders after raising its bid for the resort operator.

Gaillon and partners will now offer 17.50 euros per Club Med share, compared with an initial offer of 17 euros, and 19.79 euros per convertible bond outstanding, versus 19.23 euros initially, the company said in a statement today.

Club Med’s board favors the offer, and investors represented on the board pledged to tender 14.9 percent of shares outstanding, Gaillon said. That brings the stock controlled by the bidders to 34.23 percent. The offer is valid subject to acceptance by owners of 50 percent of the shares.

A transaction including debt would be the biggest acquisition of a travel-services company in six years, and may end almost half a century of public listing for Paris-based Club Med, which started on the Mediterranean island of Mallorca in 1950 in a village of used military tents.

Club Med shares have closed above 17 euros every day since May 28, the day after Axa and Fosun, its largest shareholders, announced their plan to team up with management to buy the company, indicating investors may be betting on a sweetened offer. The stock rose as much as 0.9 percent to 17.47 euros and was trading up 0.5 percent at 9:16 a.m. in Paris.

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