Bridgestone Boosts Offer for U.S. Auto Service Chain Pep Boys

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Pep Boys-Manny, Moe & Jack  shares were inactive in recent pre-market trade after saying late Friday that Bridgestone Americas have agreed to increase its offer for the company to $15.50 per share from previously $15, raising the total purchase price by $28 million to $863 million. Along with these company-owned stores and Bridgestone's more than 5,000 long-standing dealers and distributors in the United States, the Pep Boys' network represents an immediate expansion for BSRO, and accelerates the global growth strategy of Bridgestone Corporation.

Pep Boys accepted a sweetened, $15.50-a- share bid from Bridgestone Corp., which matched a counteroffer from billionaire investor Carl Icahn.

Bridgestone, based in Tokyo, plans to use Pep Boys to push deeper into the US and create the world's largest chain of tire and automotive centers. The investor's Icahn Enterprises LP disclosed a 12.1% stake in Pep Boys on December 4, then announced an offer to buy the company for $15.50 a share on Monday.

Tensions rise as Bridgestone matches Icahn's offer to merge with Pep Boys.

Bridgestone entered into an agreement in October to purchase Pep Boys for $15 a share.

"The joining of Bridgestone and Pep Boys combines the expertise of almost 200 years and a proud heritage in the American automotive aftermarket industry", said T.J. Higgins, president of consumer USA and Canada for Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations, in the release.

Pep Boys operates more than 800 retail locations with 7,500-plus service bays in 35 states and Puerto Rico, including 234 tire-centric Service & Tire stores.

Requests for documents and questions regarding the tender offer may be directed to D.F. King at 212- 269-5550 or 866-620-2536, or by email at Bridgestone was given three days to counter.

An acquisition of Pep Boys would give Bridgestone a significant increase in its presence in North America.

This article originally appeared on The Observer Voice

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