Shareholders of Virginia-based Smithfield Foods have voted to approve the proposed 7.1-billion-U.S.-dollar takeover by Chinese company Shuanghui International Holdings, the U.S. pork producer announced Tuesday.
More than 96 percent of the votes cast were in favor of the transaction, which represents approximately 76 percent of Smithfield's total outstanding shares of common stock as of the record date for the Special Meeting of Smithfield shareholders held Tuesday, Smithfield said in a statement.
"We are pleased with the outcome of today's vote and thank all of our shareholders for their support," said Larry Pope, president and chief executive officer of Smithfield. "This is a great transaction for all Smithfield stakeholders, as well as for American farmers and U.S. agriculture."
The deal is expected to be completed by Sept. 26, 2013. Smithfield shareholders will receive 34 dollars per share in cash for each share of Smith common stock that they own, and the company will continue to operate under its existing brand names as a subsidiary of Shuanghui International.
In late May, China's largest meat producer Shuanghui agreed a deal with Smithfield, the world's largest pork producer and processor, worth about 7.1 billion U.S. dollars in total, including debt.
The deal was cleared by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) earlier this month and will be the biggest Chinese takeover of a U.S. company once completed.