A months-long bidding war among the three top dollar store chains apparently has ended with shareholders of Family Dollar Stores Inc. approving the proposed $8.5 billion merger with Dollar Tree Inc. at a special meeting of stockholders on Jan. 22.
That means a higher but more complicated offer from Dollar General, the biggest dollar store chain, withers on the vine.
A news release from Family Dollar said a preliminary count indicates 89 percent of the approximately 84 million shares were voted in favor of the deal. The merger remains subject to approval by the Federal Trade Commission.
Dollar Tree will keep both store names and operate both store models — Dollar Tree’s, where all items are sold for $1, and Family Dollar’s model, where everyday goods and groceries are sold at a variety of discount prices.
Last summer, Family Dollar announced intentions to merge with Dollar Tree, a deal that would create a discount retailer with nearly 14,000 stores and nearly $19 billion in sales – a significant share of that in food. Dollar General responded with a hostile $9.1 billion bid for Dollar Tree but, according to media reports, that deal would have required closing many Dollar Tree stores for antitrust reasons, if the deal were ever approved.