Harris Teeter sets acquisition vote for Oct. 3

elyportillo@charlotteobserver.comAugust 27, 2013 

BIZ KROGER-HARRISTEETER 1 CH

Kroger Co. announced Tuesday, July 9 that it has agreed to buy Harris Teeter Supermarkets Inc. in a $2.44 billion deal. The sale gives Kroger a larger footprint in the Southeast, as well as adding to its already formidable bulk. The combined company will operate 2,631 supermarkets and employ 368,300 workers in 34 states.

DAVIE HINSHAW — Charlotte (N.C.) Observer

Matthews-based Harris Teeter will hold a shareholder vote Oct. 3 to approve its plan to be acquired by larger grocer Kroger Co., according to a securities filing Tuesday.

The 10 a.m. meeting will be held at Harris Teeter’s headquarters on Crestdale Road, and will be open to people who owned the company’s stock as of Aug. 22. People can also vote online or by mail. Shareholders will also be asked to approve special payments for Harris Teeter executives which they could receive upon completion of the merger.

Securities filings show that CEO Thomas Dickson and other top Harris Teeter executives are eligible for a bonus equal to 35 percent of their base salary – $262,500 in Dickson’s case – when the merger closes. If top executives leave the company or are fired after the merger, they stand to receive millions of dollars worth of “change in control” payments. For Dickson, those payments would total $15.6 million.

Harris Teeter and Kroger announced the acquisition plan last month. Kroger would spend more than $2.4 billion to purchase Harris Teeter.

The companies need federal antitrust approval to complete the merger. They plan to close the deal in the fourth quarter this year.

Portillo: 704-358-5041 On Twitter @ESPortillo

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