Marriott, Starwood Tie-up Gets Chinese Approval
By ANNE STEELE
Sept. 20, 2016 9:22 a.m. ET
Chinese antitrust regulators approved Marriott International Inc's (MAR.O) deal to buy Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc (HOT.N), clearing the way for the combined company to become the world's largest hotel chain. China's Ministry of Commerce review was the only remaining merger clearance for the deal after the companies secured approvals from more than 40 countries including the United States and Canada.
Following a weeks-long delay with regulators in China, the Marriott/Starwood merger has finally cleared its last remaining hurdle. According to a Marriott press release, the merger will now be moving forward, and is scheduled to close before the stock market opens on Friday morning, September 23.
Marriott Press Release:
Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) and Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) today announced their merger transaction has received approval from the Chinese Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM). As this was the last regulatory approval required to complete the merger, Marriott and Starwood are now able to proceed with closing the transaction and expect the transaction to be completed before the market opens on September 23, pending satisfaction of customary closing requirements. Upon closing, Marriott will solidify its status as the world’s largest hotel company.
Marriott and Starwood settled on a $12.2 billion deal. Combined, the company will have 1.1 million rooms and more than 30 brands. Marriott and Starwood expect the transaction to be completed before the market opening on Sept. 23. Once the merger closes, Starwood’s shares will cease trading on the New York Stock Exchange. Starwood shareholders will receive $21 in cash and 0.80 shares of Marriott International, Inc. Class A common stock for each share of Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, Inc. common stock. Marriott's shares were up 3.4 percent at $70.68 in late morning trading on September 20th. Starwood was up 3.2 percent at $77.47.